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Bombardement de La Moneda (palais présidentiel)

Le coup d’État de Pinochet. La mort violente de la «vía chilena al socialismo»

Depuis la fin des années 1960 le Chili se trouve dans un processus démocratique tendu, comme le montrent les informations de l’Ambassadeur de Suisse à Santiago (dodis.ch/33920). Le 4 septembre 1970, Salvador Allende remporte les élections populaires et est confirmé comme président le 24 octobre. Pour l’Ambassadeur, le candidat doit sa victoire à «une cuisine sordide» entre partis de la gauche (dodis.ch/66500).  L’expérimentation Allende  Durant les presque trois années de présidence d’Allende, premier président arrivé au pouvoir démocratiquement avec un programme d’inspiration marxiste, le Chili tente de proposer «une nouvelle voie vers le socialisme». Celle-ci passe par le renforcement de la politique de chilénisation de l’économie, ce qui représente une menace de nationalisation pour les grandes entreprises étrangères. Berne juge que pour Nestlé par exemple «le risque, certainement réel, subsiste à l’heure actuelle» (dodis.ch/36557).  Austérité des créanciers  Mais le Chili fait rapidement face à une pression des créanciers internationaux et «se trouve dans les pires difficultés» pour s’acquitter de ses dettes extérieures (dodis.ch/36452). Pour la Suisse, c’est la politique menée par la gauche qui a conduit le pays à cette situation catastrophique. Au Club de Paris, la Suisse suit donc l’avis «essentiellement influencé par les principaux pays créanciers, à savoir les USA, la RFA et le RU» et vote pour un rééchelonnement de la dette conditionné à une cure d’austérité (dodis.ch/36548).  Stratégie de la tension  Cependant, si une partie de la population voit d’importantes avancées sociales se concrétiser, en face les élites économiques chiliennes perdent une grande partie de leur pouvoir. L’escalade de la violence, soutenue en partie par la CIA, crée une tension extrême dans le pays. Les «convulsions dont la capitale chilienne a souffert» se concrétisent même en une première tentative de putsch le 29 juin 1973 (dodis.ch/66949).  Le coup d’État du 11 septembre  En réaction à ces événements, le gouvernement décrète l’État d’urgence. Dès lors, la situation ne fera qu’empirer. Le 11 septembre 1973, un groupe de généraux menés par Augusto Pinochet déclare prendre le contrôle du pays pour éviter la guerre civile. Le coup d’État, qui provoque le suicide d’Allende, est rapidement suivi d’une répression féroce contre des larges pans de la population (dodis.ch/38247). Le Conseil fédéral refuse cependant toutes condamnations du coup d’État, au motif que «la Suisse ne reconnaît pas des gouvernements, mais seulement des États» (dodis.ch/66950).  L’Ambassadeur Masset  Comme on peut le lire de la plume du Ministre des affaires étrangères suisse, le Conseiller fédéral Pierre Graber, l’attitude hostile de l’Ambassadeur de Suisse à Santiago, Charles Masset, à l’égard du gouvernement d’Allende atteint son apogée dans le rapport qu’il délivre après le coup d’État (dodis.ch/38247). Aveuglé par son anticommunisme, l’Ambassadeur demeure une figure centrale et problématique des relations Suisse-Chili durant cette période. Il considère faire face au «déroulement du processus révolutionnaire qui vise à l’instauration d’une dictature marxiste» et décrédibilise la politique chilienne dans chacun de ses rapports à Berne (dodis.ch/38246).  L’exil d’un peuple  Contrairement à ce que les généraux avaient annoncé lors du coup d’État, la junte garde le pouvoir. La répression organisée contre toute forme de résistance à la dictature provoque un exode massif de la population chilienne. Pour justifier son manque d’élan humanitaire envers les personnes tentant de trouver refuge à l’Ambassade, Masset rapporte que «la présence d’asiliés complique beaucoup la vie du chef de mission, plus encore celle de son épouse» (dodis.ch/38252). Inversement, en Suisse les ONG, la société civile ainsi que des personnalités comme l’écrivain Max Frisch se mobilisent pour accueillir les réfugiés du Chili (dodis.ch/C2560).  Intérêts étrangers  La junte de Pinochet jouit au niveau international de facilités auxquelles le régime d’Allende n’avait pas eu accès. La Suisse participe au mouvement et accorde des rééchelonnements de la dette plus favorables (dodis.ch/38276). Dès la deuxième moitié des années 1970, les relations économiques bilatérales connaîtront un véritable boom  - comme l’écrit l’Ambassade «d’excellentes possibilités d’investissements se présentent actuellement» - qui se poursuivra jusqu’à la fin de la dictature (dodis.ch/51266).  Plus sur le Coup d’État: dodis.ch/C2544 Plus sur la question de l’asile : dodis.ch/C2560
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Signing of the Treaty of Lausanne on 24 July 1923, © Francis de Jongh, BCUL/Iconopôle, Photo Elysée

The Treaty of Lausanne

The last of the great peace conferences that reshaped the world in the wake of the First World War, the Lausanne Conference, saw hundreds of diplomats, journalists and activists arrive on the shores of Lake Geneva for months of fierce negotiations on the future of the Middle East. Indeed, the situation at the start of the discussions was particularly volatile, and the signing of the Treaty on 24 July 1923 did not bring the desired peace.  Rejection of the Treaty of Sèvres  At the end of the First World War, it was through the Treaty of Sèvres that the victors originally intended to administer the remains of the Ottoman Empire. France and Great Britain cut up the pieces to their liking and gave the Armenian, Kurdish, Turkish and Greek peoples a glimpse of the idea of national states on the rubble of the Empire. Confronted with this ransacking of the defeated, Turkish nationalist groups, led by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, refused the treaty of Sèvres and resumed the path of war, against both the Sultan and Greece. By this time, it was already clear that peace would be «a long-term undertaking» (dodis.ch/44692).  Birth of the Turkish state  When the Greek army was defeated in 1922, the Treaty signatories were forced to resume negotiations. This time, Great Britain, France and Italy, along with Japan, signed a treaty with the envoy from Ankara which also included the Kingdom of Romania, the Kingdom of Greece, the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes and the Kingdom Bulgaria. Atatürk’s new Turkey gained de facto international recognition. The choice of Lausanne: between neutrality…  Initially, the parties planned to meet in Smyrna, but Turkey was unable to convince the Western powers. The idea of a Swiss city – Lausanne or Lugano – gradually emerged among the major powers (dodis.ch/65867). Switzerland’s neutrality was an important argument, as was its touristic facilities. On 27 October 1922, just two weeks before the start of the conference, the Federal Council was approached by the French Embassy in Bern and immediately offered its support. (dodis.ch/66193). Preparations for the Conference were therefore hastily undertaken (dodis.ch/65868).  …and Swiss financial interests  Official Switzerland was not pursuing a geopolitical agenda in hosting the conference. However, the choice of location was very much in line with the interests of private actors: the Oriental Railway Bank of Zurich, which had invested in and financed the development of several railway companies in Anatolia and Asia Minor, was concerned that its interests would not be represented and defended if the Treaty of Sèvres was implemented (dodis.ch/C2529).  Consequences for Switzerland  Despite its little interest in the content of the conference, the Federal Council decided to delegate the President of the Confederation to give the opening speech (dodis.ch/44876). During the nine months of the international negotiations taking place in Lausanne, Swiss diplomacy kept a very low profile. While the question of the capitulations (dodis.ch/44884 and dodis.ch/65537) as well as the possibility of forging economic relations with the new regime in Ankara were of interest to Switzerland (dodis.ch/65861 and dodis.ch/44936), its commitment remained very modest.  The Conradi Affair  Ultimately, it was an incident on the sidelines of the Conference that would dominate the headlines in Switzerland and abroad: the Conradi Affair. On 10 May 1923, Maurice Conradi, the son of an emigrant family from Graubünden who had served in Russia in the White Army, murdered Soviet diplomat Vatslav Vorovski in the Hôtel Cécil in Lausanne (dodis.ch/T1481 and the e-dossier). Conradi’s trial and acquittal would have a much greater impact on Switzerland than the conference itself and it definitively worsened the already poor relations with the USSR.  Signing at the Palais de Rumine  On 24 July 1923, one month after the event, the Treaty was finally signed in Lausanne, at the Palais de Rumine. Indirectly, this Treaty led Switzerland to recognise the modern state of Turkey, as well as Egypt (dodis.ch/44959), while other aspirations for independence of minorities in the post-Ottoman Empire were ignored by the conference. Later, as the Kemalists would seize complete power in Turkey, the fallen Sultan of the Ottoman Empire would seek refuge in Switzerland (dodis.ch/44967). The iconographic sources that illustrate this article are taken from the Frontières exhibition at the Musée Historique Lausanne (MHL), which can be visited from now until 8 October 2023. 
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Rhine Bridge Sevelen-Vaduz

The Customs Union Treaty with Liechtenstein

Exactly 100 years ago, Switzerland’s smallest neighbour made its fateful decision: Wedged between the Confederation and Austria, the Principality of Liechtenstein turned to the former and, on 29 March 1923, signed the Customs Union Treaty with Switzerland. «This laid the foundations of the close relationship which both countries have maintained until the present day», says Sacha Zala, Director of the Dodis research centre.   Breaking with Austria  The Treaty had, as its roots, the dissolution of Austria-Hungary at the end of the First World War. The defeat of the Habsburg Empire also marked the end of the customs union between the Dual Monarchy and the Principality of Liechtenstein. In May 1919, Prince Karl of Liechtenstein had already made his intentions clear: «See that the Principality enters into all of those agreements, which have previously unified it to Austria (customs, post, etc.).» Furthermore, he hoped, as a first step, for the accreditation of a diplomatic envoy in Bern, as well as that Switzerland should represent the Principality abroad (dodis.ch/44151).   A Swiss as representative of Liechtenstein in Bern?  Of all people, Prince Karl put forward the Bern native, Emil Beck, as Liechtenstein’s chargé d’affaires in Bern, which posed an awkward question for the Swiss authorities: «Can we accept a diplomatic representative who is our own citizen?» Precedents did already exist, namely the case of Guatemala (dodis.ch/44154). The Federal Council, nevertheless, asked its legations in Rome, Paris, London and Berlin to sound out the opinions of the governments of their respective countries towards a diplomatic representation of Liechtenstein by Switzerland (dodis.ch/44323). In November 1919, the decision was made: «All of the responses were favourable» (dodis.ch/44357).  Open Vorarlberg question  When drawing up the Customs Treaty, Switzerland was hesitant – at least while it was not yet decided, whether the neighbouring Austrian state, Vorarlberg, wanted to join Switzerland. «A customs union with the Principality of Liechtenstein [is] only conceivable if Vorarlberg were also to be affiliated with Switzerland», wrote the Swiss Director of Customs to the Federal President Calonder in May 1919 (dodis.ch/44194). On the contrary, for international observers it was clear: «If Vorarlberg remains a part of the Republic of Austria, there seems no reason why Liechtenstein should not continue in the position it has previously held. It would be a sovereign state.» If Vorarlberg were to join Switzerland, the Principality would find itself pushed into a position of dependency comparable to that between San Marino and Italy: «Liechtenstein would obviously cease to have any possibility of independent intercourse with other states.» (dodis.ch/55495) The Swiss envoy in Vienna drew a similar conclusion: «If Vorarlberg were to become Swiss, then Liechtenstein certainly would too.» (dodis.ch/44167)  «Purely a matter of discretion»  Once the issue of Vorarlberg had been overcome with its decision in favour of Austria, the negotiations between the Principality and Switzerland gained momentum, starting with the new postal union between the two states in 1921. In a report, the Finance and Customs Department spoke in favour of starting negotiations: The «geographical preconditions» have been fulfilled and given the «similarity of the population […] in customs and habits» (dodis.ch/44700). Nevertheless, the Federal Council was somewhat cautious: The customs unification brings Switzerland «neither meaningful advantages, nor will it have any notable disadvantages. It is, therefore, purely a matter of discretion, whether Switzerland wants to offer this service to the small country.» In any case, so many years since Liechtenstein’s first inquiry, it is necessary to «take a position on this matter» (dodis.ch/44800). The Customs Union Treaty between Switzerland and Liechtenstein was finally signed on 29 March 1923 with great ceremony. (dodis.ch/63042)  Close relationship put to the test  Relations between Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein have been tested again and again. For example, in what became known as the «March Crisis» in 1938, when German troops occupied Austria, or with regard to the fact that products of Liechtenstein were regularly referred to as Swiss (dodis.ch/62590). There have been regular disputes around the armoury at St Luzisteig (dodis.ch/62584) – unintended Swiss artillery fire into Liechtenstein in 1968 even led to «anti-imperialism demonstrations» in the USA (dodis.ch/36177). The finance and banking scandals of the 1970s also led to political complications (dodis.ch/62577), as has the Principality’s growing foreign policy emancipation: Liechtenstein had already joined the UN in 1990 (dodis.ch/C1854) and while Switzerland narrowly rejected joining the European Economic Area in December 1992, the voters of Liechtenstein voted in favour of joining a few days later (dodis.ch/C2487).  «Close neighbourly ties»  «At the same time though, it was these crises, in particular, that provided the opportunity to deepen this special relationship», emphasises Sacha Zala. The «March Crisis» led to Switzerland’s foreign policing competencies being extended to include Liechtenstein (dodis.ch/47170), in 1954 an agreement on AHV (Old-Age and Survivors Insurance) was signed (dodis.ch/10605), cooperation in sport was increased (dodis.ch/60472) and, in 1980, the two neighbours closed a new monetary agreement (dodis.ch/62564). «The Customs Union Treaty of 1923», summarises Zala, «laid the foundations for this now one hundred years of close neighbourly ties.»  
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Ambassador Jolles and Federal Councillor Brugger (from left) at the signing of the free trade agreement with the ECC on 22nd of July, 1972, dodis.ch/50546

The free trade agreement with the EEC

For the editorial staff of «Weltwoche», in 1972 it was a «historical landmark» whose significance could be compared to the Federal Charter of 1291, to the Battle of Marignano, to the Peace of Westphalia, the Congress of Vienna, and to the foundation of the Federal State in 1848 (dodis.ch/36211). What this Zurich weekly, fresh from the press, took to the hall of glory of Swiss history was the free trade agreement with the European Economic Union (EEC), signed in Brussels 50 years ago, on 22nd of July, 1972, by Federal Councillor Ernst Brugger on behalf of Switzerland. This was «a decisive step in the context of our traditional efforts to contribute to the integration of our continent, as far as we can while maintaining direct democracy, the parliamentary rights, and neutral foreign policy», Brugger underlined during his speech (dodis.ch/36209). «Special relations» of the EEC with the «non-candidates » «When in 1969 France dropped her veto against British membership, the way for a first round of EEC extension was clear», says Sacha Zala, Director of the Dodis research centre. Parallel to the accession talks with the United Kingdom as well as with Denmark, Ireland and Norway, Brussel also negotiated the «establishment of special relations» with the «non-candidates», the EFTA countries Finland, Iceland, Austria, Portugal, Sweden, and Switzerland (dodis.ch/36161). Any economic fragmentation of Western Europe had to be avoided, but how much these states were supposed to contribute to the project of European integration was still an open question when the explorative talks were started. For the Swiss negotiators, the «range of possible solutions with the EEC» went from «a solution close to joining» as far as to a «common trade agreement» (dodis.ch/36157). Institutional contribution by Switzerland? In his opening statement in Brussels on November, 1970, Federal Councillor Brugger emphasized the already «high degree of economic interpenetration between Switzerland and the European Communities», particularly when it came to the exchange of goods, where the 75% of Swiss imports and 60% of exports were «unsurpassed by any other third country» (dodis.ch/36161). Brugger’s chief negotiator, the Director of the trade division of the Department of Economic Affairs, Paul Jolles, knew that both Switzerland and the European Community (EC) were breaking new ground. «The querying of suitable, novel modalities of cooperation requires creative imaginativeness and, accordingly, needs time», Ambassador Jolles expressed his task which was still to be solved even 50 years later: «The most difficult problem will doubtlessly be the shaping of Switzerland’s institutional contribution to the integration process.» (dodis.ch/35774) The results of the agreement After all, a comprehensive institutional solution could not be achieved. On 22 of July, 1972, Federal Councillor Brugger signed an agreement which «did not provide for any participation in Europe’s political integration». On the other hand, the treaty exempted more than 90% of Swiss exports to the EEC, in particular industrial products, from existing duties and fixed rules of competition (dodis.ch/36210). One prerequisite of the EEC was «a solution for the delicate ‹Swiss made› problem» which, concerning the products of the watchmaking industry, could be tied up two days before in the context of the agreement (dodis.ch/35586). Indeed, any «solution for the second generation problems (such as currency policy, energy policy, environmental policy, transport policy)» was left out, as chief negotiator Jolles summed it up. Yet still, for the first time it was possible to «establish a long-term relation including consultation possibilities» with the EEC (dodis.ch/34608). «Irreversible development in the direction of Europe» During the negotiations, Switzerland had intensively operated with the argument of the agreement being threatened with being rejected by the referendum, thus exerting pressure on the EEC. However, when finally the Federal Council made the free trade agreement subject to the obligatory referendum, this was not just to keep face towards the outside. «By way of this treaty, also our cooperation with Europe will be consolidated in the long run», Minister of Economic Affairs Brugger had it during his statement to the Federal Council, «and nevertheless we tie ourselves economically – if ‹only› by way of a free trade agreement – to a community of more than 300 million inhabitants». «For practical reasons» Switzerland «would probably never contemplate» any termination of the agreement. Minister of Home Affairs Hans-Peter Tschudi doubled «that the treaty with the EEC starts a development of our country in the direction of Europe which is mostly irreversible». (dodis.ch/35778) The people’s rights and foreign policy The referendum on the free trade agreement also marked the beginning of the intended extension of the people’s rights in the course of a reform of the state treaty referendum. Increasingly, foreign political decisions required the sovereign’s agreement. Thus, as early as at the beginning of the negotiations the Federal Council had decided to, by way of an increased communications policy, create «an atmosphere of interest, of open-mindedness and understanding among the broad masses for the great issues which concern the fate of our country» – «not as propaganda but basically as a didactic effort» (dodis.ch/35368). Juicy in this context, however, is a note by the Integration Office in charge of the relations with Brussels, titled «What should not be said when telling the people about the Switzerland-EEC agreement» (dodis.ch/36230). Finally, both the people and the Cantons agreed with the free trade agreement on 3rd of December, 1972, with 72.5 % affirmative votes. «Never since has the Federal Council’s European policy been given such a broad legitimation» is the conclusion by Dodis Director Zala. «Any further integration of Switzerland was prevented by the people by the referendum on the EEA agreement of December, 1992.»  
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From the left: Presidents Shushkevich (Belarus), Karimov (Uzbekistan) and Nazarbayev (Kazakhstan) with the President of the Swiss Confederation Felber at a reception on February 1st, 1992, in Davos. Source: dodis.ch/60614.

The dissolution of the USSR and the recognition of the successor states

Exactly 30 years ago, on December 23rd, 1991, Switzerland was one of the first states at all to recognize the successor states of the Soviet Union. «Apart from the early recognition of the People’s Republic of China on January 17th, 1950, this is one of the few deviations from Switzerland’s usual policy of diplomatic recognition», explains Sacha Zala, Director of the Research Centre Diplomatic Documents of Switzerland (Dodis). According to the almost sacred guideline of «not counting among the first and not among the last», the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs (FDFA) was usually reluctant when it came to recognition issues. «It is even more astonishing», says Thomas Bürgisser, the managing editor of the volume Diplomatic Documents of Switzerland 1991 – soon to be published, «that on that December 23rd Switzerland acted on the spur of the moment and was one of the very first states to recognize the independence of the former Soviet Republics». Until the year 1991 the Soviet Union consisted of 15 Union Republics which, de jure, enjoyed far reaching sovereignty rights but were actually subject to the centre in Moscow. Kick-off in the Baltic countries In 1991, the dissolution of the Soviet empire was happening at a breath-taking pace. The Baltic republics of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania had marked the beginning, the central power violently opposing these aspirations until the August putsch in Moscow (dodis.ch/C1951). On August 28th, the President of the Swiss Confederation Flavio Cotti was able to inform the Presidents of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania about the decision by the Federal Council «that Switzerland is going to establish full diplomatic relations with the three independent Baltic republics» (dodis.ch/C2196). Between September 3rd and 6th, a delegation headed by Ambassador Jenö Staehelin, the Head of the Political Department I of the FDAF, went on a trip to Tallinn, Riga and Vilnius to formally confirm the reestablishment of diplomatic relations by way of an official exchange of letters (dodis.ch/57645). The founding of the Commonwealth of Independent States The erosion process of the Soviet empire went on unrestrainedly. On December 8th, 1991, by the Minsk Treaty the Presidents of Russia, Belarus, and the Ukraine founded the «Commonwealth of Independent States» (CIS). On this occasion they curtly stated that «herewith the Soviet Union as a subject of international law and as a geo-political reality terminates its existence» (dodis.ch/60365). Shortly afterwards FDFA discussed Switzerland’s official stance. In the course of the meeting «the opinion pushed through that the recognition should not be postponed any longer if it becomes obvious that the point of no return has been reached. In this case, however, not only the Slavic republics would have to be recognized but also all others striving for recognition, at least as far as such a recognition is uncontentious.» (dodis.ch/58737)        A telephone conference before Christmas On December, 21st, almost all other republics of the former USSR joined the Alma-Ata (Almaty) declaration by the CIS. The point of no return seemed to have been reached. On Monday, December 23rd, at 1:30 p. m. the Federal Council discussed an EDA motion, faxed by the Federal Chancellery at noon, on the recognition of the Russian Federation as well as the Republics of Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, and Kyrgyzstan (dodis.ch/57514). «It is important that Switzerland will establish contacts with the new republics as soon as possible», the Federal Council affirmed the motion by the head of FDFA, René Felber (dodis.ch/57766). After a discussion of 15 minutes the Federal Council, by Decision No. 2518, passed that year’s last decision. Appreciation of early recognition On that same evening, by telex via the Swiss Embassy in Moscow, the FDFA notified the recognition to Presidents Karimov, Kravchuk, Niyazov, Nabiyev, Yeltsin, Snegur, Akayev, Nazarbayev, Shushkevich, Ter-Petrosyan, and Mutallibov (dodis.ch/C1950). «For practical reasons» the Federal Council was hesitant with notifying the recognition of Georgia which had not joined the CIS and where the situation was unclear. Recognition at an early state was to pay off: «When travelling through the successor republics of the USSR», wrote Switzerland’s ambassador to Moscow, Jean-Pierre Ritter, to then go on: «I am always impressed by the satisfaction, indeed gratitude, expressed towards us for having been the first in Europe to notify our recognition of the new independent states, and also for having been the first to appear personally to formalise the establishment of relations» (dodis.ch/59825). The establishment of diplomatic relations As early as in January, 1992, the continuation of the relations with the Russian Federation as the legal successor of the USSR was stated by way of a simple exchange of notes between Berne and Moscow (dodis.ch/61322 and dodis.ch/61319). Subsequently, at first Ambassador Ritter went to Yerevan and Baku as a special envoy, to establish diplomatic relations with Armenia and Azerbaijan (dodis.ch/61278 and dodis.ch/61241). In early February, the FDFA sent the head of the Directorate of Administration Matters and Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Johann Bucher, on a special mission to Kiev and Minsk, to formalise the relations with the Ukraine and Belarus (dodis.ch/60848).  In June, once again Ambassador Ritter went to Alma-Ata, to establish relations with Kazakhstan (dodis.ch/60853). After Berne, on March 23rd, 1992, had also notified the recognition of Georgia which, like the three Baltic republics, did not join the CIS (dodis.ch/61323), in June Ambassador Ritter also paid a visit to Tbilisi, where he established relations and handed over his letter of accreditation to the new President, Eduard Shevardnadze (dodis.ch/61191). Finally in July it was time for Ashgabat (Turkmenistan) and Tashkent (Uzbekistan) (dodis.ch/61106). Contacts at the Presidential Level In early February the participation of high-ranking delegations from the CIS states in the World Economic Forum (WEF) at Davos was an opportunity for Foreign Minister Felber, Federal President in 1992, to meet Presidents Karimov (Uzbekistan), Snegur (Moldova), Nazarbayev (Kazakhstan), Shushkevich (Belarus), Ter-Petrosyan (Armenia), and Mutallibov (Azerbaijan) as well as to have a more thorough exchange with Ukrainian President Kravchuk (dodis.ch/61277 and dodis.ch/61354). On the occasion of a visit, scheduled on short notice, by President Askar Akayev to Federal President Felber in Berne, once again in February the establishment of diplomatic relations between Switzerland and Kyrgyzstan was decided (dodis.ch/60852).  In Berne on September 2nd, 1992, Felber exchanged letters on the establishment of diplomatic relations also with Moldovan President Mircea Snegur (dodis.ch/61317). Various missions and contretemps Making contacts to the Soviet successor states happened via different channels. In April and June, for example, high-ranking delegations of the Federal Financal Administration paid visits to the CIS states. With regard to the passing of the additional dispatch by the Federal Council on continuing the increased cooperation with states in Central and East Europe (dodis.ch/59002), which earmarked an extension of development loans to the CIS, in August and September the FDFA sent two missions to all Central Asian and Trans-Caucasian republics. The former was once again headed by Ambassador Staehelin, the latter by his deputy, Daniel Woker. Also representatives of the Federal Office of Foreign Economic Affairs were members of the delegations (dodis.ch/61252 and dodis.ch/61250). It was not always easy to coordinate the various missions, and there were contretemps and struggles for competences (dodis.ch/58143, dodis.ch/60836 and dodis.ch/60846). «Helvetistan» and Heidi Tagliavini «The lively interest by the Swiss authorities opens up prospects towards two developments», Dodis historian Thomas Bürgisser has it: on the one hand Switzerland, after having joined the Bretton Woods institutions, wanted to make sure to get a seat in the Executive Boards of the World Bank and the World Monetary Fund, and for this purpose it had to found its own voting group. Turkmenistan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan as well as Poland could be one over for this project, later also Kazakhstan and Tajikistan joined the so called «Helvetistan Group». «Due to its commitment in Central Asia, Switzerland was able to make sure to have an influential position with these international financial institutions», says Bürgisser. It is also remarkable that Ambassodor Ritter on his trips was in each case accompanied by his associate, who was a fluent Russian speaker. Heidi Tagliavini was the name of the young diplomat who, on later occasions, was repeatedly entrusted with difficult missions to conflict regions, such as in 1995 as a member of the OSCE Assistance Group to Chechnia, as a special envoy of the EU to research the causes of the war between Russia and Georgia in 2008, or as an OSCE representative for Ukraine in 2014.
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Demonstration against Bishop Wolfgang Haas on 17 June 1990 in Chur. (Keystone-SDA, Keystone, 477127 (RM))

La reprise des relations diplomatiques avec le Vatican

«Dans l’objectif d’améliorer la représentation des intérêts suisses au Vatican, nous vous proposons de nommer, pour une période limitée allant jusqu’en 1992, un ambassadeur en mission spéciale auprès du Saint-Siège et d’attribuer le titre d’ambassadeur spécial au chef de la Division politique I» (dodis.ch/57567). «Cette demande du DFAE, adressée en des termes simples et acceptée par le Conseil fédéral il y a exactement 30 ans – le 30 octobre 1991 –, marque un tournant décisif dans les relations diplomatiques entre la Suisse et le Vatican», explique Sacha Zala, directeur du centre de recherche Dodis, qui poursuit: «C’est le premier représentant diplomatique nommé par la Suisse auprès du Saint-Siège». Cette étape intervient à la suite de l’histoire longue et parfois tumultueuse des relations entre la Suisse et le Siège apostolique. De la situation pionnière à la rupture des relations diplomatiques En 1586, la nonciature permanente, c’est-à-dire la représentation diplomatique du Vatican, s’établit à Lucerne. Le nonce apostolique devient ainsi – après l’ambassadeur de France qui réside à Soleure depuis 1522 déjà – le deuxième représentant diplomatique en Suisse. Cette forme de représentation est restée fondamentalement constante au cours du temps, à l’exception des cinq ans d’interruption sous la République helvétique. Cette continuité se rompra cependant à la faveur du Kulturkampf. En effet, l’expulsion du vicaire apostolique de Genève et la vive critique faite à l’encontre de la Suisse par le pape Pie IX dans son encyclique de novembre 1873 conduisent le Conseil fédéral à la conclusion que «le pape [ayant] prononcé de la manière la plus ostensible des accusations graves et répétées à l’endroit des autorités suisses et de ses résolutions, […] une représentation diplomatique permanente du Saint-Siège est devenue inutile». Le gouvernement décide dès lors, en décembre 1873, de rompre les relations (dodis.ch/42009). La reprise de relations unilatérales Pendant près d’un demi-siècle, la Suisse n’entretient aucune relation officielle avec le Vatican. Il faut attendre la Première Guerre mondiale pour que les questions humanitaires rapprochent la Suisse neutre et le Siège apostolique. Cette convergence d’intérêts inaugure une coopération dans le domaine de l’internement des prisonniers de guerre malades et blessés (dodis.ch/43395), qui permet à son tour un nouveau rapprochement sur le plan politique. En juin 1920, le Conseil fédéral décide ainsi de la reprise des relations diplomatiques, mais «en posant toutefois comme condition expresse que la Suisse, comme elle n’avait pas pratiqué la réciprocité dans le passé, [ne pourra] pas la pratiquer dans l’avenir» (dodis.ch/44597 et dodis.ch/44567). En outre, le Conseil fédéral avertit l’envoyé du pape «qu’il entre sur un terrain quelque peu difficile et qu’il ferait bien de ne pas poursuivre une politique d’intervention dans nos affaires intérieures et d’éviter, par une grande retenue, toute matière à discorde entre catholiques et protestants ou entre catholiques eux-mêmes» (dodis.ch/44598). Vers une bilatéralisation des relations Depuis 1920, le Vatican est donc à nouveau représenté officiellement en Suisse par un nonce apostolique. Le caractère unilatéral des relations est strictement respecté, également après la Seconde Guerre mondiale face à la crainte «de provoquer des luttes confessionnelles dans certaines régions de notre pays» (dodis.ch/6680 et dodis.ch/6681). Ce n’est qu’en 1963 que des signes d’un changement d’opinion apparaissent (dodis.ch/18831). Cependant, le gouvernement considère que la priorité est la révision totale de la Constitution fédérale et, avec elle, la suppression de l’article d’exception confessionnelle (interdiction des jésuites). Il faudra, pour cette raison, «encore un certain temps avant qu’un représentant diplomatique soit accrédité auprès du Saint-Siège» – comme l’assure le conseiller fédéral Willy Spühler à la Commission de politique extérieure du Conseil national en 1968 (dodis.ch/32151). Normalisation des relations Le pronostic de Spühler se révélera exact. Il faudra attendre précisément 1987 pour qu’une «normalisation graduelle» des relations soit envisagée au sein du Conseil fédéral (dodis.ch/57616). Le choix même des mots donne lieu à des désaccords. En 1988, par exemple, le nonce apostolique se plaint que «l’on parle toujours de ‹normalisation› des relations», alors qu’il existe déjà bel et bien «des relations diplomatiques normales, qui peuvent toutefois être ‹perfectionnées› par l’établissement d’une ambassade suisse» (dodis.ch/58648). Deux ans plus tard, le même nonce qualifiera pourtant d’«absurde et dépassée» la nature unilatérale des relations (dodis.ch/58647). L’«affaire Haas», au début des années 1990, permet la poussée décisive. Les disputes autour de la nomination de l’ultra-conservateur Wolfgang Haas comme évêque de Coire montrent clairement les conséquences du fait que «la réalité suisse n’est rapportée à Rome que dans la perception du nonce» (dodis.ch/57567). Le DFAE examine en détail différentes options (dodis.ch/56234) et retient au final la proposition faite au Conseil fédéral de nommer l’un de ses principaux responsables, le réformé Jenö Staehelin, au poste d’ambassadeur temporaire en mission spéciale (dodis.ch/57567). En 2004, le Conseil fédéral procède à un ajustement en accréditant pour la première fois un ambassadeur de Suisse auprès de la Curie. Le 1er octobre 2021 – presque 31 ans après la première nomination d’un ambassadeur en mission spéciale –, le Conseil fédéral décide d’établir une ambassade suisse auprès du Saint-Siège. «La tension qui a prévalu historiquement entre le libéralisme de l’État fédéral et l’ultramontanisme continue d’opérer dans la mesure où les relations diplomatiques ne sont pas exemptes de controverses et qu’elles sont caractérisées par une prudence constante », résume le directeur de Dodis, Sacha Zala.
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Rund 1200 geladene Gäste aus dem In- und Ausland fanden sich am 7. September 1991 zum «Europatag» in Sils ein. Reden und Festakt fanden im Botta-Zelt, der «visuellen Klammer» der 700-Jahrfeier, statt. (dodis.ch/60332)

700-Jahrfeier der Eidgenossenschaft – die internationale Dimension

1291 bis 1991 – 700 Jahre Eidgenossenschaft – ein Grund zum Feiern. Das sagte sich die Schweiz in den ausgehenden 1980er Jahren. «CH91» hiess das gigantische Jubiläumsprojekt, das im Zusammenspiel mit einer Landesausstellung rund um den Vierwaldstättersee stattfinden sollte – und 1987 am Innerschweizer Stimmvolk grandios scheiterte. Das neue, dezentralere Konzept unter dem Motto «Begegnungen 1991» und der Gesamtleitung des Delegierten des Bundesrats, Marco Solari, sollte dem Gigantismus des ersten Vorschlags entgegenwirken und der weltoffenen Dimension der Schweiz Platz einräumen (dodis.ch/59889). Nebst dem «Fest der Eidgenossenschaft» und dem «Fest der vier Kulturen» sollte das «Fest der Solidarität» verdeutlichen, dass sich die «Schweiz als Teil der Völkergemeinschaft versteht und auch gewillt ist, zur Gestaltung dieser weltweiten Gemeinschaft beizutragen» (dodis.ch/57786).  Tag der internationalen Beziehungen  Der Startschuss für die internationale Dimension der Jubiläumstrilogie verkörperte der «Tag der internationalen Beziehungen» am 14. Juni 1991 (dodis.ch/C1922). Mit UNO-Generalsekretär, Javier Pérez de Cuéllar, der Generalsekretärin des Europarats, Catherine Lalumière und EFTA-Generalsekretär Georg Reisch sowie den Aussenministern der Nachbarstaaten empfing der Gesamtbundesrat illustre Gäste zu politischen Gesprächen im Landgut Lohn (dodis.ch/57698). Am anschliessenden Festakt im Bundeshaus schlossen sich ihnen weitere geladene Gäste aus dem In- und Ausland an. Zu den wohlwollenden Rednern gehörte der UNO-Generalsekretär, der von den drei «Wundern» der Schweiz sprach: Sie sei geeint und doch vielseitig, auf ihre Unabhängigkeit bedacht und gleichzeitig weltoffen und schliesslich arm an natürlichen Ressourcen und trotzdem reich (dodis.ch/59057).  Die Welt trifft Graubünden  Weniger offiziell, dafür umso bunter wurde es im Sommer in Graubünden, dem Gastgeberkanton des Herzstücks des Solidaritätsfests. Ganz im Zeichen der aussereuropäischen Länder stand das Internationale Fest, das durch zahlreiche Kurse, Konzerte, Austauschprojekte, Workshops und einem grossen Volksfest in Chur persönliche Begegnungen mit Menschen aus aller Welt ermöglichte. Während letzteres als voller Erfolg verbucht wurde, blieb der Widerhall des Symposiums «Wem gehört die Welt?», das dem Nord-Süd-Dialog gewidmet war, etwas unter den Erwartungen (dodis.ch/59059). Der ursprünglich angedachte Ehrengast aus Simbabwe, Robert Mugabe, lehnte die Einladung aufgrund anderer Verpflichtungen ab (dodis.ch/57946). «Treuzeugnis an Europa»  Die «Europäischen Begegnungen» im Engadin entsprachen schliesslich dem bundesrätlichen Wunsch, die Beziehungen zwischen der Schweiz und Europa in der entscheidenden Phase der Verhandlungen mit der EG über den EWR-Vertrag besonders zu unterstreichen (dodis.ch/57786) und boten die Gelegenheit, durch den Blick über die Landesgrenzen hinweg zur Schaffung des neuen Europas beizutragen (dodis.ch/57787). Insbesondere sollte auch die junge Generation in den Dialog miteinbezogen werden: Im Rahmen der Begegnungswoche «Spiert Aviert» (Rätoromanisch für «Offener Geist») tauschten sich Jugendliche aus ganz Europa zur europäischen Zukunft aus, Gedanken, die auch am offiziellen Festakt Ende Woche Gehör fanden.  Der Europatag am 7. September in Sils-Maria entwickelte sich zu einem der zentralen Anlässe der gesamten 700-Jahrfeier (dodis.ch/C1921) und wollte sich als «Treuzeugnis der Schweiz» an Europa verstanden wissen, wie im Schlussbericht an den Bundesrat nochmals proklamiert wurde (dodis.ch/59883). Mit Elisabeth Guigou, Mario Monti und Carl Friedrich von Weizäcker sprachen drei namhafte Persönlichkeiten über ihre Zukunftsvision für Europa, und Bundespräsident Flavio Cotti offenbarte sich in einer visionären Rede als überzeugter Europäer (dodis.ch/57668). Der Auftritt von Bronislavas Kuzmickas, Vizepräsident des litauischen Staatsrates, stand sinnbildlich für die neuen Verbindungen in den Osten des Kontinents. Damit liess sich der Europatag als schöner Erfolg verbuchen, der lediglich durch die «Stauungen auf dem Weg ins Festzelt» – verursacht durch den zahlreich erschienen europäischen Adel – getrübt werden konnte (dodis.ch/57683).  Mit Klischeevorstellungen ausräumen  Mit Festlichkeiten wie diesen sowie zahlreichen Veranstaltungen der Schweizer Botschaften und lokalen Schweizervereine fand die 700-Jahrfeier auch im Ausland Beachtung (dodis.ch/55757). Nicht zuletzt sorgte die «wohl umfangreichste je organisierte Informationskampagne der Schweiz im Ausland» für internationale Aufmerksamkeit. Pressemitteilungen, Logos und Fotos wurden produziert, Medienkonferenzen veranstaltet und Einladungen verschickt, um «bei einem breiten, weltweiten Publikum ein totales, zukunftsgerichtetes Bild der Schweiz bekannt zu machen» (dodis.ch/58068). Falsche Klischeevorstellungen sollten ausgeräumt und die Schweiz als dynamisch, offen und selbstkritisch präsentiert werden – ein Anspruch dem nicht immer entsprochen werden konnte. So seien die Informationen zur schweizerischen Entwicklungshilfe allzu selektiv, kritisch und verzerrend, beklagte der Schweizer Botschafter in Nigeria (dodis.ch/58044). «Entwicklung braucht Entschuldung»  Mit der von Hilfswerken lancierten Petition «Entwicklung braucht Entschuldung» fand die technische Zusammenarbeit prominenten Eingang ins Jubiläumsjahr, das als Anlass genommen wurde, «verstärkte und erneuerte Solidarität auch gegenüber den schwächeren Gliedern der internationalen Gemeinschaft zu beweisen» (dodis.ch/56084). Ein Rahmenkredit von symbolträchtigen 700 Millionen Franken wurde gesprochen, zum einen zur Finanzierung von Entschuldungsmassnahmen zugunsten ärmerer Entwicklungsländer und zum anderen für die Finanzierung von Umweltprogrammen und -projekten globaler Bedeutung.  Gleichzeitig erfüllten unzählige weitere Veranstaltungen, Ausstellungen, Projekte, dezentrale Feste und Feiern im Zeichen des 700-Jahrjubiläums das Jahr 1991: Junge Menschen aus aller Welt tanzen auf Einladung des Kantons Zürichs an der Welt-Jugendparty (dodis.ch/57568), die «fünfte Schweiz» weihte den neu erstandenen Auslandschweizerplatz in Brunnen ein und im Bundeshaus diskutierten Jugendliche im Rahmen der ersten Jugendsession über die Schweizer Aussenpolitik (dodis.ch/58000).  Nachdenkliches Jubiläum  So zog das Büro des Delegierten des Bundesrates Ende 1991 denn auch eine positive Bilanz über das Jubiläumsjahr: «A tous niveaux, les célébrations du 700ème ont largement contribué à abattre les fronts et à réduire les antagonismes.» (dodis.ch/59883) Unbestritten blieben aber auch die Startschwierigkeiten des Jubiläumsprojekts, der Schock in der Öffentlichkeit rund um die 1989 aufgedeckte Fichenaffäre, die Empörung über den als scheinheilig empfundenen Aufruf an die Kulturschaffenden der Schweiz, sich kreativ an der Feier zu beteiligen und der damit verbundene Kulturboykott. Auch die Projektgruppe des Internationalen Festes war von dieser kritischen Welle betroffen, hielt aber am Projekt fest: Damit das Fest keine Jubelfeier werde, sondern «Anstoss, über die Rolle der Schweiz in der Welt nachzudenken» (dodis.ch/59063). 
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RTR Cuntrasts: 1923 sajetta Moritz Conradi a Losanna in diplomat sovietic d’aut rang. Il Russ-Svizzer cun ragischs grischunas vesa sa sez sco il nov Gugliem Tell che vul deliberar la carstgaunadad dal communissem.

L’«affera Conradi»: L’assassin grischun e la revoluziun

Avant 40 onns ha el purschì materia per in film da kino russ «emplenì cun clischés sovietics» (dodis.ch/49291). L’onn 1977 s’interessavan era cineasts en Svizra per «il tema anc adina pulit brisant» (dodis.ch/49292): I sa tracta da l’assassinat dal diplomat sovietic Wazlaw Worowski tras Moritz Conradi, in Svizzer en Russia, l’onn 1923 a Losanna. In mazzament cun consequenzas extendidas.Film documentar da Helen Stehli-Pfister Uss ha Helen Stehli-Pfister realisà per RTR in film documentar davart quest mument central da las relaziuns svizras-sovieticas en il temp tranter las guerras. Da la partida sco expert è Sacha Zala, directur dal post da perscrutaziun Documents Diplomatics da la Svizra. A chaschun da la premiera dal film ils 5 da mars 2017 ha il DDS arranschà in e-dossier cuntegnend documents istorics exclusivs ord la banca da datas online Dodis davart l’«affera Conradi».In mazzament a LosannaIgl è il confess d’in assassin: «Forsa vegnan pir noss vegnintsuenter a chapir mia acziun ed esser engraziaivels ch’jau hai cumbattì sco emprim cunter questa banda da delinquents internaziunala», ha Moritz Conradi dà per protocol a la polizia da Losanna. Ils 10 da matg 1923 aveva el schluppettà en l’Hotel Cécil davant perditgas il diplomat sovietic Wazlaw Worowski. Suenter il murdraretsch ha el sa laschà arrestar senza resistenza. El aveva agì ord persvasiun: «Tranter tals ch’èn sa participads al declin da la Russia ed indirectamain a quel da l’entira umanitad, na dati nagins innocents» (dodis.ch/48619).  Svizzer en Russia ed anti-bolschevist ardent  Ils Conradis, emigrads en la mesadad dal 19avel tschientaner dal Grischun, manavan a St. Petersburg, da lezza giada chapitala da la Russia zaristica, ina pastizaria flurinta. Suenter la Revoluziun d’october l’onn 1917 èn lur bains vegnids expropriads; il bab e l’aug da Moritz assassinads dals Bolschevichi. Durant la guerra burgaisa russa ha Conradi cumbattì sco uffizier da «l’Armada Alva» cunter ils «Cotschens». Suenter la sconfitta da las forzas cunterrevoluziunaras è el scappà via la Tirchia enavos en sia veglia patria. Qua è el vegnì en contact cun emigrants russ. Quests han probablamain intimà l’anti-bolschevist ardent al mazzament. «Crim dad ina persuna privata ad autras persunas privatas»?  Il di suenter l’assassinat è sa radunà il Cussegl federal a Berna. En in communiqué ha la Regenza federala sentenzià questa «violaziun da la morala e da la lescha» cun «indignaziun». Ulteriur basegn d’agir n’ha il Cussegl federal dentant betg vesì. Giuristicamain sofisticà n’ha la regenza betg taxà l’attentat sco delict politic, mabain sco «crim malign, commess dad ina persuna privata ad autras persunas privatas» (dodis.ch/44914). Il diplomat sovietic Worowski era bain delegà sco observader a la Conferenza da l’Orient ch’aveva lieu a Losanna. Pervia da divergenzas internaziunalas n’era el dentant betg accredità uffizialmain sco participant da la conferenza (dodis.ch/44913).   Decisiv per la sistida da las relaziuns La posiziun dal Cussegl federal vers l’attentat era fitg delicata. Tschun onns avant, il november 1918, aveva la Svizra exilià ina missiun sovietica, perquai ch’i vegniva renfatschà als diplomats bolschevics d’avair fatg «propaganda revoluziunara» ed aschia dad esser conculpaivels a la chauma generala svizra dal 1918 (dodis.ch/43740). Dapi lura era il rapport tranter Berna e Moscau mals (dodis.ch/44885). L’«affera Conradi» è alura stada decisiva per la sistida da las relaziuns da la Svizra cun la Russia sovieta durant plirs decennis. Pir suenter la Segunda Guerra mundiala han las duas regenzas puspè reprendì contacts uffizials. Cumplicitad dal Cussegl federal?  En ina nota diplomatica ha il minister da l’exteriur Georgi Tschitscherin crititgà vehementamain la posiziun dal Cussegl federal concernet il murdraretsch: La «refusaziun illegitima» dad attribuir il status diplomatic a Worowsi, saja stà in «act nunlubì ed ostil» ed haja chaschunà ina «situaziun anormala ed ambigua» che haja provocà attatgas cunter il delegà sovietic. Tuttina n’hajan las autoritads «prendì naginas mesiras preventivas» per impedir in act da violenza cunter el. Perquai portia la regenza svizra ina «responsabladad absolutamain evidenta e gronda», ina cumplicitad a l’assassinat (dodis.ch/44916).  Murdraretsch cunter violenza revoluziunara  Il Cussegl federal ha reagì cun in telegram salà sin las «accusaziuns impertinentas e malvulentas» da Tschitscherin. Il Departement politic federal (DPF, oz DFAE), manà dal anti-communist persvadì Giuseppe Motta, ha refusà tut las renfatschas ed è passà a la cunterattatga. I saja chaussa da la Regenza sovieta da finalmain conceder in’indemnisaziun per «las expropriaziuns ed ils acts da violenza nunditgs» ch’èn vegnì commess durant la revoluziun a millis Svizzers en Russia (dodis.ch/44917). Il process penal cunter Conradi menà fitg emoziunalmain vegn era a suandar questa logica. Acquittament da l‘assassin Las tractativas davant la dretgira da giuraders a Losanna durant il november 1923 eran orientadas pli pauc vers il mazzament effectiv, mabain vers la qualificaziun dal reschim da cussegls en Russia. A moda explicativa è l’act da Conradi vegnì congualà cun il destin tragic da sia famiglia, las suffrientschas dals Svizzers en Russia en general e las unfrendas dals Bolschevichi (dodis.ch/48632 e dodis.ch/48633). Ils giuraders han alura pelvair acquittà l’assassin. Na betg mo en Russia era l’indignaziun gronda. Il Cussegl federal da l’autra vart ha refusà tut las renfatschas cun renviament rigurus al federalissem e la separaziun da las pussanzas (dodis.ch/44953).  Represa da relaziuns per aut pretsch La Russia sovieta ha decretà in scumond d’en- ed extrada per Svizras e Svizzers e declarà in boicot per martganzia svizra. Prest ha Moscau signalisà interess per ina «regulaziun da la situaziun», insistiva dentant «sin ina tscherta satisfacziun en chaussa Worowski» (dodis.ch/44999). Adina puspè è il chass vegnì negozia cun mediaziun internaziunala (dodis.ch/45015 e dodis.ch/45172). L’onn 1927 è vegnì cuntanschì almain ina sligiaziun temporara (dodis.ch/45319). Igl ha dentant cuzzà fin l’onn 1946, fin che Berna – per in aut pretsch politic – ha cuntanschì la represa da relaziuns uffizialas cun la URSS (cf. e-dossier).  Vus pudais leger quest e-dossier era per tudestg, franzos, talian ed englais.Per il film: Link RTR.Data d'emissiun:dumengia, ils 05-03-2017, 17:25 sin SRF1mesemna, ils 08-03-2017, 08:35, 09:30 e las 12:50 sin SRF infogievgia, ils 09-03-2017, 11:00 sin SRF infovenderdi, ils 10-03-2017, 13:15 sin RSI LA2sonda, ils 11-03-2017, 14:20 sin RTS 2 e las 17:15 sin SRF1dumengia, ils 12-03-2017, 07:30 sin RSI LA1mardi, ils 14-03-2017, 14:55 sin RTS 2
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