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Next step Swiss abroad submit petition over e-voting

OSA board

OSA board members handing in the petition on Friday

(OSA)

The Organisation of the Swiss Abroad (OSA) has handed in a petition with more than 11,000 signatures calling for electronic voting to be made available to all Swiss living overseas by 2021.

The petition on e-votingexternal link was given to the Federal Chancellery on Friday.

“This voting method is often the only way that the Swiss Abroad can exercise their political rights, as voting documentation sent by post often reaches them too late,” the OSAexternal link said in a statement.

In all, 11,492 signatures were collected online from 150 countries since the petition was launched in August. This is the equivalent of almost 7% of the Swiss abroad who are registered to vote, the OSA said. This was more than the 10,000 expected.

+ More on the Swiss abroad and e-voting here

Blow

E-voting in Switzerland was dealt a blow on November 28 when canton Geneva announced it would shelve its system due to financial reasons. The OSA had reacted with disappointment to the news, saying that people would assume that the move was linked to doubts over the security of e-voting. 

A recent test by hackers did find security vulnerabilities in the Geneva system, but according to Swiss public radio RTS this was not the reason for the cantonal authorities wanting to ditch its e-voting platform. 

Geneva’s decision leaves only one other e-voting project still standing in Switzerland: the one run by Swiss Post.

The use of electronic voting in Switzerland has been making slow progress amid setbacks over security concerns. Over the past 15 years, more than 200 trials with e-voting have been carried out at nationwide and cantonal levels.

Keystone-SDA/OSA/swissinfo.ch/ilj

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