Didier Burkhalter

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Didier Burkhalter
Didier Burkhalter 2011.jpg
Head of the Department of Foreign Affairs
In office
1 January 2012 – 31 October 2017
Preceded by Micheline Calmy-Rey
Succeeded by Ignazio Cassis
President of Switzerland
In office
1 January 2014 – 31 December 2014
Vice President Simonetta Sommaruga
Preceded by Ueli Maurer
Succeeded by Simonetta Sommaruga
Vice President of Switzerland
In office
1 January 2013 – 31 December 2013
President Ueli Maurer
Preceded by Ueli Maurer
Succeeded by Simonetta Sommaruga
Head of the Department of Home Affairs
In office
1 November 2009 – 31 December 2011
Preceded by Pascal Couchepin
Succeeded by Alain Berset
Member of the Swiss Federal Council
In office
1 November 2009 – 31 October 2017
Preceded by Pascal Couchepin
Succeeded by Ignazio Cassis
Chair of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe
In office
1 January 2014 – 31 December 2014
Preceded by Leonid Kozhara
Succeeded by Ivica Dačić
Personal details
Born (1960-04-17) 17 April 1960 (age 57)
Neuchâtel, Switzerland
Political party FDP.The Liberals
Spouse(s) Friedrun Sabine Burkhalter
Children 3
Alma mater University of Neuchâtel

Didier Burkhalter (born 17 April 1960 in Neuchâtel) is a Swiss politician.

Burkhalter is a member of FDP.The Liberals. He was elected as a member of the Swiss Federal Council on 16 September 2009. He succeeded Pascal Couchepin on 1 November 2009 when he became head of the Federal Department of Home Affairs (the Swiss interior minister). Since 1 January 2012, he serves as head of the Department of Foreign Affairs.[1] In 2014 he was President of the Swiss Confederation. He served as Chairman-in-Office of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in 2014. He left the Federal Council on 31 October 2017 (replaced by Ignazio Cassis).[2]

Biography[edit]

A native of the Canton of Neuchâtel, Burkhalter served in the Parliament of the Canton of Neuchâtel from 1990 to 2001. From 1991 to 2005, he was a member of Neuchâtel's city government (Conseil communal), and was the mayor of the city several times (1994/1995, 1998/1998, 2001/2002). From 2003 to 2007, he was a member of the Swiss National Council.

On 11 November 2007, Burkhalter was elected to the Council of States, along with Social Democratic Party (SP) candidate, Gisèle Ory, who was re-elected for a second term. During the election campaign, he was backed by the Liberal Party (PLS) and the SVP/UDC.

On 4 December 2013, Burkhalter was elected as President of the Swiss Confederation for the 2014 term by taking 183 of the available 222 votes of the Federal Assembly.[3][4]

On 1 January 2014 Burkhalter assumed the office as President of the Swiss Confederation. As President of the Confederation, he presides over meetings of the Federal Council and carries out representative functions that would normally be handled by a head of state in other democracies (though in Switzerland, the Federal Council as a whole is regarded as the head of state). He is also the highest-ranking official in the Swiss order of precedence, and has the power to act on behalf of the whole Council in emergency situations. However, in most cases, the President is merely primus inter pares, with no powers over and above his six colleagues.

Burkhalter has a degree in Economics, is married to a native Austrian, and is the father of three children.[5]

On 14 June 2017 Burkhalter published a letter in which he announced that he will be resigning as Federal Councillor on 31 October 2017.[6]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Burkhalter wird Aussen-, Berset Innenminister". Tages-Anzeiger (in German). 2011-12-16. Retrieved 2011-12-16. 
  2. ^ "Didier Burkhalter passe le témoin à Ignazio Cassis" (in French). 21 October 2017. Retrieved 2017-11-01. 
  3. ^ Burkhalter: «Ich werde andere Krawatten tragen als Maurer», article on the website of Swiss Radio & Television srf.ch from December 4, 2013 (in German). Retrieved 20-01-2014
  4. ^ Ungewohntes Rampenlicht für den Aussenminister, article in the Tagesanzeiger from December 25, 2013 (in German). Retrieved 20-01-2014
  5. ^ Didier Burkhalter - Head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs, at Federal Administration admin.ch (in English). Retrieved 20-01-2014
  6. ^ Besson, Sylvain (June 14, 2017). "Didier Burkhalter démissionne de ses fonctions au 31 octobre". Le Temps (in French). Retrieved June 14, 2017. 

External links[edit]

Political offices
Preceded by
Pascal Couchepin
Member of the Swiss Federal Council
2009–2017
Succeeded by
Ignazio Cassis
Head of the Department of Home Affairs
2009–2011
Succeeded by
Alain Berset
Preceded by
Micheline Calmy-Rey
Head of the Department of Foreign Affairs
2012–2017
Succeeded by
Ignazio Cassis
Preceded by
Ueli Maurer
Vice President of Switzerland
2013
Succeeded by
Simonetta Sommaruga
President of Switzerland
2014