Posted on October 18, 2018
Swiss soldiers ordered to throw stones and nuts at recruit, video shows
Stoning of young soldier thought to be part of hazing ritual
Leaked footage of soldiers throwing stones and nuts at a young recruit in a suspected hazing incident is to be investigated by the Swiss military.
The video appears to show a male officer shouting “ready” and “fire” before troops hurl the objects at an uniformed colleague standing with his back to the group.
The soldiers seen in the footage are believed to be part of the army’s LVb Flab 33 anti-aircraft training unit stationed in the Swiss village of Emmen.
First published by Switzerland’s public broadcaster RSI this week, the clip was filmed in September.
Although the victim did not report the stoning incident, the video was widely shared within the unit, the broadcaster reported. The victim’s father gave it to the channel.
The unnamed man reportedly claimed his son and other army recruits had experienced repeated harassment from superiors in the training unit as part of their initiation.
The Swiss army tweeted about the “mistreatment” of the recruit earlier this week and said both the military and judiciary were now investigating.
“The army does not accept corporal punishment,” it stated. “The head of the army is visiting the concerned recruit school. Military justice / judiciary is investigating the incident.”
The authorities are set to finish their investigation within a few weeks.
In 2013 a former commander of a Swiss army tank unit was fined for his role in sanctioning the “humiliating” hazing rituals for new recruits.
Recruits under his command at a training centre in Bure were forced to eat cat food, drink from their army boots and serve their superiors naked.