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News roundup: This week in Switzerland

A roundup of news in Switzerland from March 22-28. 

 

A line of Ukrainian refugees wait at the Polish border.

 

Switzerland opens doors to Ukrainian refugees

A spokesman for Swiss refugee aid announced over the weekend that at least 1,300 Ukrainians are currently staying with 537 host families in Switzerland and that another 30,000 families have registered their willingness to help. While many Swiss cantons announced that host families would receive some sort of financial aid for housing refugees, the spokesman said they are not aware of a single case where money has been delivered so far. Read more.

 

Students skipping school with false COVID-19 tests

Swiss students have been caught using Capri-Sun drinks to create false positives on COVID-19 tests in order to obtain additional days off of school. Apparently, the juice has high enough acid levels that when placed on at-home, rapid COVID-19 tests that the pH results appear positive. The trick has gone viral on social media platform TikTok. Read more.

 

Climate researchers warn that Switzerland’s melting glaciers are a “canary in the coal mine.”

 

Swiss cartographers race to keep up with melting glaciers

Switzerland’s national mapping agency, Swisstopo, is usually able to update topographical maps of the country every few years, thanks to a dedicated team of researchers who fly over and study every inch of the mountainous country. These days the agency is struggling to keep maps current as climate change hastens the melting of glaciers and ice formations. A trend that researchers find “frightening.” Read more.

 

Swiss Army needs to prepare for cyber war

Earlier this month, Defense minister Viola Amherd announced that Switzerland would fund and staff a cyber defense team, as the country lagged behind others in terms of cyber warfare preparedness. Over the weekend, think tank Avenir Suisse released a study warning that the country is vulnerable to cyber attacks on “military and other critical infrastructure” and needs to invest in that before upgrading physical army equipment. Read more.

 

Inside Switzerland’s suicide tourism industry

Traveling to Switzerland may conjure up images of skiing the Alps and sitting fireside with a pot of fondue; but for about 1,300 tourists a year, Switzerland is synonymous with death. The country’s “suicide tourism” has long been considered controversial to outsiders, but the locals overwhelmingly support a patient’s right to choose how their life ends. Read more.

 

 

 

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