Swiss vote to deport convicted immigrants

The Swiss have voted in favour of a referendum proposal for the automatic expulsion of non-Swiss citizens for certain crimes, with 53% agreeing that those convicted of crimes ranging from benefit fraud to murder should be deported.

The SVP, who was behind last year’s referendum that imposed a ban on the building of Islamic minarets, pointed to the fact that more than 60% of prison inmates do not have Swiss nationality.

Opponents of the referendum proposal say the measures go too far as children of immigrants do not automatically get Swiss citizenship and this could mean sending some people who were born and brought up in Switzerland to countries they have never visited or know nothing about.

Immigrants who commit crimes covered by the proposal would serve their sentence in Switzerland and then be deported without the possibility of appeal.

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