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Folklore festival crowns wrestling champion

Twenty-three-year-old Daniel Bösch from northeastern Switzerland has won the Swiss wrestling (Schwingen) competition at the traditional Unspunnen Festival in Interlaken.

Bösch beat Christian Schuler from central Switzerland on Sunday in front of a sold-out crowd of 15,000.

The Schwingen competition was part of the three-day Swiss Traditional Costume and Alpine Herdsmen Festival that also includes a stone throwing event and plenty of folklore.

The event first took place in 1805 and was held this weekend for only the tenth time. It was originally organised by Bernese aristocrats to try to better integrate the people from the Bernese Alps into the canton.

In 1984, the festival became the target of Jura activists seeking complete separation from canton Bern, who stole the 167-pound Unspunnen stone. It was returned in 2001 but Jura separatists managed to steal it again in 2005. It is still missing.

swissinfo.ch and agencies


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