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Defence minister wins reprieve in parliament

The Senate has confirmed its approval for next year's planned armament programme worth SFr917 million ($836 million).

This content was published on September 29, 2008 - 17:38

It rejected a proposal by centre-left parties to delay the purchase of technical equipment for Switzerland's fleet of F-18 fighter aircraft.

The House of Representatives last week threw out the entire package, which also includes the purchase of armoured vehicles.

The issue will go back to the House for further debate during the session in December.

The discussions about the armament programme are seen as key for the embattled defence minister, Samuel Schmid.

He's come under increasing pressure to resign, particularly by the rightwing Swiss People's Party as well as the Greens.

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