Zimbabwe opposition ministers arrested

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Four members of Zimbabwe’s opposition, all of them aides to Prime Minister Morgan Tsvangirai, and one of the country’s best-known human rights lawyers were arrested over the weekend and Monday, a government spokesperson confirmed after media reports. The arrests, mainly for interfering with or imitating police activity by carrying out investigations came […]

Egyptian military given broad powers while votes counted

Widespread criticism despite military promise to hand over power to elected president GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Egypt’s military is coming in for heavy criticism from outside the country for steps taken this weekend, as citizens went to the polls to elect a new president. Votes are not yet counted, with both candidates claiming to be ahead, […]

Aung San Suu Kyi sworn in to parliament in Burma

GENEVA, SWITZERLAND – Burmese opposition leader Aung San Suu Kyi was sworn in to parliament Wednesday 2 May, finally taking public office after a 25-year long struggle against the country’s military regime. The Nobel prize winner had initially refused the phrasing for the swearing in, which holds her to “safeguard the constitution” drafted by the […]

Rude Russian representatives to be fined

Imagine a world where government officials reply to their constituents directly, and in a timely manner. In Russia, this might become a reality. A bill submitted to the Russian Duma Friday 1 April would require officials to be fined $350 (10,000 rubles) for not responding to letters from citizens suggesting changes and improvements. Russian officials […]

Details out on likely global bankers’ pay rules

Basel, Switzerland (GenevaLunch) – The Basel Committee of the Bank for International Settlements has published for consultation its Pillar 3 proposed requirement for banks to regulate remuneration: notably, the long-term relationship between performance and various types of remuneration such as bonuses. The BIS published an initial outline in July 2010, but Monday 27 December it […]

Swiss cast their votes on foreigners, crime, taxes

Bern, Switzerland (GenevaLunch) – The Swiss go to the polls once again Sunday 28 November to vote on two popular initiatives,  one to deport foreigners who commit crimes, where voters are given three options. The second federal item on the ballot proposes to reduce the differences among Swiss cantons in their tax rates on large […]

Voters approve constitutional changes in Turkey

Voters in Turkey have overwhelmingly approved a set of constitutional changes in a referendum. In voting 12 September, 58-42 percent of voters backed the ruling Justice and Development (AKP) government’s proposed changes. Turnout was 78 percent. The changes include a greater say by the government in nominating judges and prosecutors, trials of military personnel in […]

Swiss to vote on sales tax increase and constitutional reform Sunday

voting in Switzerland

Bern, Switzerland (GenevaLunch) – Swiss voters go to the polls Sunday 27 September to decide on a proposed increase in the value-added tax (VAT) to finance the country’s deeply indebted federal disability insurance scheme. They must also decide on whether to strike down a constitutional right that they approved six years ago. The first measure […]

ANC wins South African elections

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) won South Africa’s national election, but failed to hold the two-thirds parliamentary majority it has had, and needs to make unilateral changes to the constitution. The ANC has not made such changes in the past five years, with the necessary majority, but the issue has recently become more sensitive due […]