The Federal Prosecutor’s Office is to investigate whether there is a case to answer against Geneva politician Eric Stauffer for allegedly offending a foreign state.
Stauffer’s party is using Libyan leader Moammar Gaddafi’s image in a campaign to expel foreign criminals.
Swiss voters are due to go to the ballot box on November 28 to determine whether foreigners who commit serious crimes in Switzerland should be automatically deported.
Libya has supported the move to look into the case.
Stauffer is president of the Geneva Citizens’ Movement, a group that backs the initiative, which created posters showing lists of daily police arrests and a photo of Gaddafi with the words “he wants to destroy Switzerland”.
Stauffer has claimed the posters are a matter of freedom of expression.
Authorities say such posters complicate “efforts to restore a climate of trust” between Switzerland and Libya, whose relations have been strained since the arrest of one of Gaddafi’s sons in Geneva in 2008 and the subsequent holding of two Swiss hostages in Tripoli.
swissinfo.ch and agencies