The rightist Swiss People’s Party (SVP) triumphed in the country’s parliamentary elections Sunday, winning just under 30% of the vote for its vigorous stance against immigration. The right-leaning Liberal Party (FDP) also increased its share of parliamentary seats, Reuters reported, prompting analysts to talk of a Rechtsrutsch, or shift to the right, in the national political mood.
The SVP now controls 65 seats in the legislature — the highest of any party since the early 1960s.
Before the polls, Swiss voters listed immigration, integration and foreigners as their main concerns, the Associated Press says. Hundreds of thousands of refugees and migrants have poured into Europe this year and the SVP reflected anxieties over the influx in its campaigning, making pledges to tighten restrictions on who can enter and remain in the country — including not just asylum seekers but nationals from E.U. member states. (Switzerland is not an E.U. member.)
“The people are worried about mass migration to Europe,” the party’s leader Toni Brunner said in an interview on Swiss TV, according to Reuters.