May 29, 2023
Federal Palace in Bern

Federal Palace in Bern, Switzerland

© Look Press

The head of the parliamentary faction of the Swiss People’s Party (SVP), Thomas Aeschi, objected to the fact that the apparatus of the Federal Assembly of Switzerland allowed the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelensky to speak to parliamentarians, describing the upcoming video message as an attempt by Kiev to have a direct influence on the supply of weapons to the Armed Forces of Ukraine, writes May 5 RIA Novosti.

“I object to the video message of the President of Ukraine in the meeting room of the National Council … Ukraine is trying to directly influence the decision of the parliament on the supply of weapons and ammunition. Neutrality is being violated!” – wrote the Swiss politician in his microblog on Twitter.

Eshi also said that he had sent an appeal to the apparatus of the National Council with a request to refuse the Ukrainian side to speak.

Earlier, on May 5, it was reported that during the summer session, the President of Ukraine will address the Swiss parliamentarians via video link. The corresponding request of the Ukrainian embassy in Bern was approved by the offices of the National Council (large chamber of the Swiss parliament) and the Council of Cantons (small chamber of parliament).

The press service of the country’s parliament reported that the exact date of Zelensky’s speech will be set in agreement with Kiev. The press service also said that since 1970, 28 guest speakers have addressed the Federal Assembly, including heads of state and representatives of international organizations, as well as the Minister of Foreign Affairs. No foreign leader has ever addressed Swiss parliamentarians via video link before.

Earlier, Swiss Permanent Representative to the UN Pascal Christine Beriswil reported that the re-export of Swiss weapons of the Armed Forces of Ukraine is impossible without changing the law.
At the beginning of March 2023, the Swiss Cabinet, against the backdrop of debates in parliament, announced that it was going to continue to adhere to the practice, which implies a ban on the re-export of weapons to states involved in armed conflicts.

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