Former cabinet minister and Swiss People’s Party strategist Christoph Blocher was attacked by a civilian following an event at a Zurich hotel. Blocher was not injured.
The attack occurred following a podium discussion hosted by Blocher and Social Democratic Parliamentarian Corrado Pardini entitled “Switzerland-EU: which way forward?” At the end of the event, an elderly man approached Blocher and attacked him. Security officers were able to subdue the attacker before the police arrested him a short time later.
According to the Zurich police, the attacker was an 81-year-old man. A search revealed he was carrying a knife.
In recalling the attack, Blocher told the SonntagsBlick newspaper that “a man asked me in the hotel hallway whether I remembered him. I looked at him, thought about it and then asked who he was. He answered, ‘I’m the person who made you cabinet minister’ and hit me with his fist.” Blocher added that the man seemed confused.
Blocher served in the Swiss cabinet from 2003 to 2007 and is currently responsible for party strategy for the conservative right Swiss People’s Party. He is a polarising figure in Switzerland whose policies emphasise anti-EU and anti-immigration positions.
swissinfo.ch and agencies