The French city is located in Haute-Savoie near the Franco-Swiss border. The mayor of the small town of Châtel, which has around 1,200 inhabitants, has taken the decision to decorate the town hall with the Swiss flag to protest against the French government’s insistence on closing the tracks. The ski season has been canceled in France, but across the border in Switzerland the slopes are open.
“Symbolically, the Town Hall of Châtel was adorned with the colors of Switzerland. ”
Switzerland seeks to capitalize on the closure of French resorts by keeping its borders open to attract skiers from neighboring countries.
A large ski resort in Switzerland even organizes a shuttle service for French skiers to visit its slopes.
This move is fueling tensions in the city of Châtel as the shuttle will pick up the skiers from there.
Enrique Caballero, Director of Portes du Soleil Switzerland said: “We plan to pick up skiers near Châtel and other French resorts by bus.
He added, “We have no intention of enriching ourselves on the misfortune of others.
“Our main objective is to help our French neighbors by absorbing some of their skiers during the holidays.
“But if that translates into a balanced income for this winter season, so much the better!”
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In the German parliament, the German chancellor said: “We are going to push for a vote in Europe on the possibility of closing all ski resorts.
“If you listen to noises coming from Austria, unfortunately it doesn’t seem like we can find an easy solution at the moment.
“But we will try again. ”
An outbreak has occurred in the Austrian ski resort of Ischgl, which is believed to have been a major factor in the exponential spread of the coronavirus during the first wave of the pandemic earlier this year.
Holidaymakers who frequented the ski resort then brought the COVID-19 back to their home countries, allowing the disease to spread quickly across Europe.
Additional reporting by Maria Ortega.
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