Residents of Liechtenstein have categorically rejected a proposed ban on casinos in a referendum that has polarized the tiny principality and its 40,000 citizens, Reuters reports.
With six casinos scattered throughout the country, the microstate is considered the Las Vegas of the Alps.
Arguments for a ban on issues such as gambling addiction and potential damage to the rich country's reputation, however, were decisively rejected, as 73% of those who voted rejected the ban, while 27% supported it, with a turnout of 70%.
The referendum and the necessary signatures for it were initiated by the IG Volksmeinung, a group set up to fight the casino flood.
They argue that the fledgling industry risks tarnishing the national image, which the state has worked hard to restore. The country was on an international blacklist of tax havens until it began easing bank secrecy laws more than a decade ago.
Before the vote, the country's prince spoke out against the ban, as did the government, which said the gambling industry was an important source of revenue and argued that the ban was too drastic a measure to address such problems as gambling addiction.