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Some Swiss abroad to cast electronic ballot

More and more cantons are making it possible for Swiss expatriates to vote electronically. In September, expats registered in St Gallen, Fribourg and Solothurn can do so.

The occasion will be a referendum on changes to Switzerland’s unemployment insurance law.

Several cantons have taken advantage of a change in the law that came into force on January 1, 2008 which obliges cantons to introduce e-voting for Swiss living abroad.

Expats registered in canton Neuchâtel were the first to be granted e-voting rights, casting their electronic ballots in June of the same year.

They were followed last year by expats from cantons Geneva, Bern and Basel.

In November, the privilege will be extended to people from cantons Zurich, Aargau, Graubünden, Schaffhausen and Thurgau.

According to the foreign ministry, 684,974 Swiss lived abroad in 2009, compared with 7.8 million residents in Switzerland.

More than 130,000 expatriates have registered to vote. Most live in France, Germany and the United States.

swissinfo.ch

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