Several dozen activists have interrupted a debate in the Swiss House of Representatives, unfurling a banner and singing a song of resistance.
Young people from Climate Strike Action on Thursday unfurled a banner in the public gallery saying “It’s the final countdown – 16 months left”. They sang the Eighties pop song The Final Countdown before launching into their own version of the Italian folk song Bella Ciao, adopted as an anthem of the anti-fascist resistance by Italian partisans during the Second World War.
The campaigners said that in order to limit temperature warming to 1.5°C, a reduction in emissions had to be initiated by the end of 2020 at the latest. This leaves only 16 months to take the necessary measures, they said.
“The stunt should wake up the decision-makers and show that young people – some of whom can’t even vote yet – are demanding an ambitious climate policy and a comprehensive plan. Parliament is discussing measures, but there’s no time left for discussing,” an activist told the Swiss news agency, Keystone-SDA.
Despite warnings from the speaker of the House, Marina Carobbio Guscetti, the protestors continued singing and did not roll up the banner. The session was therefore suspended for several minutes.
Security then intervened and escorted the protestors, who did not offer any resistance, into a room and took down their details.
Carobbio said after consultation with the police authorities she would not take any legal steps against the demonstrators.