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Swiss Club Ireland: 'Die Weltwoche Article Does Not Speak for Us'
The President of a Swiss social group in Ireland says she is outraged by the publication of an article in a Swiss magazine which criticised Ireland as a nation of 'cuddly alcoholics' and racists.
Speaking to WorldIrish, Swiss Club Ireland's Chantal Nash says that the piece, entitled 'Ireland? Forget It!', does not reflect the views of its members, and stressed that she personally has never experienced anything bad in the forty years she has lived in Ireland:
I am really shocked and outraged to hear about it. It is not our experience as Swiss people living in Ireland. We greatly appreciate the Irish and we have never experienced anything like what the author is describing. It is shocking that she can write such ignorance.
Image: Die Weltwoche website (behind paywall)
In the article, the journalist Antje Joel also says that those interested in visiting the country should forget what they read in guidebooks, as 'there's hardly a country in Europe with so many stereotypes as false as the Emerald Isle'.
She goes on to describe Irish people as racist, with 'hardly any teeth in their mouth' and those that do have teeth that 'are narrowly aligned like rabbits'. Chantal Nash says she was taken aback by the tone of the article:
I am in shock that anybody could say such things about Ireland and the Irish. The author appears to be misinformed and the things she is saying are simply not true.
In fact we have many Swiss retirees and students coming over to Ireland to live because they love the country so much. I can assure you that as the President of Swiss Club Ireland, none of our members have come across anything like what the author is describing.
According to its Facebook page, Swiss Club Ireland was created in 1947 in Dublin. Its aim is to promote friendship and to foster fellowship amongst Swiss nationals in Ireland and with Irish people. It also aims to strengthen the ties between Switzerland and Ireland.