An upscale Swiss village of around 2,000 people has reached a $304,000 buyout agreement to avoid hosting nine refugees in its community.
In a close 579-525 vote Sunday, the residents of Oberwil-Lieli voted in favor of paying the opt-out fee instead of taking its designated quota of nine refugees. The community will have to pay the fee every year to maintain the exemption.
The money will be taken from the community’s annual budget and will go to the canton, the Swiss equivalent of a state. (RELATED: Switzerland To Vote On Automatic Deportation For Foreigners Committing Crimes)
Andreas Glamer, a member of the national parliament and president of Oberwil-Lieli, said it is a “civil duty” to resist asylum quotas set by the canton.
“Switzerland must close all of its green borders with barbed wire,” Glamer told daily newspaper Tages Anzeiger.
Glamer is particularly worried that neighboring Italy is increasingly becoming the entrance point for migrants after Greece has become a harder target. (RELATED: Switzerland Suspends Citizen App After Boys Refuse To Shake Women’s Hands)
“There is going to be an invasion of asylum seekers,” Glarner said. “The only way into Europe is via Italy. Italy is not a desired destination. The asylum seekers are coming to Switzerland.”
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