Rarely has a bill exposed Swiss politics as much as the one about continued participation in the European border protection agency Frontex. All of a sudden, right-wingers were able to make friends with the hated EU, while the otherwise pro-European leftists demonstratively distanced themselves from human rights violations.
As much as both sides got caught up in their contradictions, it is correct that Switzerland supports the expansion of Frontex. Because if Switzerland wants to be a member of the Schengen area – and want to benefit from freedom of travel and security – then it has to participate fully.
But the larger Frontex becomes and the more Swiss money flows there, the more Switzerland’s responsibility to play an active role increases. Sitting in the Frontex bodies, but pointing at the EU with a worried frown at pictures of drowned children – that is not possible.
In the referendum campaign, the Federal Council promised to meet human rights violations at the EU’s external borders with “zero tolerance”. From now on he will be measured by it.