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Monday, March 20, 2023

Switzerland may allow re-export of its weapons to Ukraine

by The Kyiv Independent news deskJanuary 24, 2023 10:24 pm

On Jan. 24, the Swiss parliament’s lower house security policy commission approved an initiative to allow other countries to re-export weapons made in Switzerland to Ukraine.

“The majority of the commission believes that Switzerland must contribute to European security and accordingly provide more support to Ukraine,” lawmakers said in a statement.

The commission believes that the initiative is in line with the country’s law of neutrality since “changes do not allow the direct export of war material to conflict zones” but only affect the “non-re-export declarations of the countries that buy Swiss war material.”

The initiative has yet to be approved by both chambers of the parliament.

In the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, traditionally neutral Switzerland joined the EU in imposing sanctions against Moscow, including those targeting Russian gold. The Swiss government has also frozen Russian financial assets worth nearly $8 billion in response to the invasion.

Last week, Switzerland’s Foreign Minister Ignazio Cassis said his country supports using frozen Russian assets for Ukraine’s reconstruction, but it would require “major legal adjustments.” As the current Swiss legislation doesn’t allow the confiscation of sanctioned assets, a referendum may be needed to change this law, he said.

The Kyiv Independent news desk
The Kyiv Independent news desk

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