Brunner calls for more professional secret services

The head of a special commision set up by the defence minister, Adolf Ogi, says Switzerland's intelligence services must be run along more professional lines. Edouard Brunner (picture) made the remarks in a newspaper interview.

This content was published on February 13, 2000 - 05:59

The head of a special commision set up by the defence minister, Adolf Ogi, says Switzerland's intelligence services must be run along more professional lines, with specialised staff replacing part-time collaborators. The former state secretary, Ed0uard Brunner, made the remarks in a newspaper interview.

Brunner would not say what recommendations he will make to Ogi in a report expected next Tuesday on restructuring the secret services. However, he said that the same principles that govern security policy should be applied to the secret services.

Brunner also noted that it is only possible to combat phenomena like terrorism and money-laundering through international cooperation.

Ogi set up the special commission last September following the Bellasi affair, a massive defence ministry fraud scandal that also implicated the intelligence services. He asked the commission to carry out a thorough review of the way the intelligence services are managed, as well as their relations with government.

A report by parliament's Ways and Means Committee in December said that the most serious damage done to military intelligence by the Bellasi affair was a loss of confidence in Switzerland and among foreign services.

However, Brunner denied that the affair had damaged Switzerland's image, saying other countries had experienced similar cases.

Brunner's comments come as the intelligence services find themselves at the centre of a new row, after newspapers published names from an alleged list of part-time secret agents, including senior figures from Swiss public and private life.

From staff and wire reports

This article was automatically imported from our old content management system. If you see any display errors, please let us know: community-feedback@swissinfo.ch

Share this story