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The Swiss Confederation was founded in 1291 as a defensive alliance among three cantons. In succeeding years, other localities joined the original three. The Swiss Confederation secured its independence from the Holy Roman Empire in 1499. Switzerland's sovereignty and neutrality have long been honored by the major European powers, and the country was not involved in either of the two World Wars. The political and economic integration of Europe over the past half century, as well as Switzerland's role in many UN and international organizations, has strengthened Switzerland's ties with its neighbors. However, the country did not officially become a UN member until 2002. Switzerland remains active in many UN and international organizations but retains a strong commitment to neutrality.

Languages & Population

Approximate Population: 7,554,661

Nationality (Noun): Swiss (singular and plural)

Nationality (Adjective): Swiss

Official Language(s): German, French, Italian

Major Languages Spoken: Albanian, English, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish

Map of Switzerland

Country Facts

Country Name (long form): Swiss Confederation

Country Name (short form): Switzerland

Country Name (local long form): Schweizerische Eidgenossenschaft (German); Confede

Country Name (local short form): Schweiz (German); Suisse (French); Svizzera (Itali

Name of Capital: Bern

UTC Time Difference (from capital): UTC+1 (6 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

Countries Near by, and Bordering Switzerland: Italy, Liechtenstein, Austria, France, Germany

Land Area: 39770 sq km

Water Area: 1520 sq km

Comparative Area: slightly less than twice the size of New Jersey

Total Land Boundry: 1,852 km

Coastline: 0 km (landlocked)

National Holiday: Founding of the Swiss Confederation, 1 August (1291)

International Phone Code: 41

Currency Code: Swiss franc (CHF)

Internet Country Code: .ch

US Embassy Location: Jubilaumsstrasse 93, CH-3005 Bern

US Embassy Mailing Address: use embassy street address


Switzerland flag

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