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Church bells ring out to protest against war in Ukraine

President Cassis at desk with computer and headset
President Cassis also manned the phones of the Swiss Solidarity Chain on Wednesday to help collect funds for the victims of the war in Ukraine. © Keystone/Michael Buholzer

Switzerland’s main churches have organised a protest against the war in Ukraine.

The bells of the Roman Catholic, Protestant and Christian Catholic churches across the country rang out for a few minutes on Wednesday morning, inviting people for a moment of reflection and solidarity.

The Swiss parliament interrupted its session at the same time before resuming its regular spring session.

At least two government ministers also joined the action, according to the Keystone-SDA news agency.

Swiss President and Foreign Minister, Ignazio Cassis, said a joint gesture of silence is a strong sign for peace.

Transport Minister Simonetta Sommaruga said her thoughts were with the hundreds of thousands of refugees.

Women and children

So far, just over 1,300 people, mostly women and children, from Ukraine have arrived in Switzerland, according to the State Secretariat for Migration.

Most of them have been housed in official asylum centres, others were offered temporary homes with private citizens.

The United Nations said it has registered more than two million people fleeing the war in Ukraine.

The humanitarian arm of the Swiss Broadcasting Corporation (SBC) – swissinfo.ch’s parent company – held a Day of SolidarityExternal link on Wednesday, raising funds for victims of the war.

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