Switzerland. According to
Countryaah, Switzerland was attracted international
attention during the year as a result of partly new
information about the contact with Germany during the Second
World War. The co-ordination was partly about the purchase
of gold from Nazi Germany, and partly about money that Jews
deposited in Swiss bank accounts during the war. An American
investigation estimated that Nazi Germany's theft of gold in
the occupied countries totaled $ 44 billion. A Swiss report
showed that 76% of the German Riksbank's gold exports during
the Second World War went to Switzerland.
In July and October, Swiss banks published lists of
accounts that have not been moved since 1945. On the
Christmas list, there were 1,800 names of foreign nationals,
and in October list 14,000 names of Swiss citizens. People
who claimed to be entitled to an account could sign up to
have their case tried.
In February, the Swiss government, in consultation with
the country's three largest commercial banks, opened a 100
million Swiss franc fund to compensate victims of the
Holocaust. A month later, President Arnold Koller announced
that he also intended to set up a Solidarity Fund for the
Three referendums were held during the year. The first
lost a proposal from the Socialist Party (included in the
coalition government) to ban arms exports; allows
prescription of heroin to heroinists.
Switzerland, which rejected the EEA Agreement by a vast
majority in 1992, has since been able to resolve its
dealings with the Union only through special agreements. As
the last country among the EU's neighbors, Switzerland
signed a border agreement with the EU during the year. The
agreement laid the groundwork for a more efficient exchange
of information on issues related to smuggling, customs fraud
and transit traffic.
In the second half of the 14th century, the land
oligarchy was overthrown and its lands and laws were made
municipal. Of this rural, democratic movement arose
Landsgemeinde or assembly of all residents - the
cantonal community great instrument. A similar movement was
led by the lows in the cities. From then on, the Federation
embarked on the conquest of territories. Through numerous
battles, during the 15th century, the Union grew into
thirteen cantons, formed alliances with others, and created
the first state agency: the Reichstag, with two seats and
one vote per canton.
In 1516, the King of France imposed a covenant of peace
on the cantons, and then an alliance in 1521, which gave him
the right to recruit soldiers in Switzerland. The military
and economic ties created by this alliance - which only
Zurich refused to sign - were maintained until the end of
the old Federation in 1798.
The Reformation came to Switzerland with the priest Ulrik
Zwinglio, whose sermons against serving military service as
a mercenary, against corruption and the power of clergy,
aroused great audacity and strengthened the bourgeoisie in
Zwinglio's attempt to change the federal alliance for the
benefit of the Reformed cities failed because of the
Catholic victory of the Catholic lands. The Chapel's Second
National Peace, signed in 1531, therefore provided benefits
to the Catholic minority over the Protestant majority.
The areas that the two faiths shared about experienced
constant tensions, but both camps were forced to cooperate
and in this way preserved the unity of the Federation. While
the agricultural sector dominated in the Catholic areas,
trade and industry flourished in the Protestant, with the
help of French, Italian and Dutch refugees.
Real estate, commerce and industry, along with the
recruitment of rental troops, provided great wealth and
power to a small core of families - especially in cities -
while leaving many small farmers without rights, forced to
cultivate mediocre lands, or to work as farm workers.
The popular consultations disappeared in the 17th
century. The city's tax collection caused riots, such as the
great peasant uprising in 1653, which was severely
destroyed, but three years after the war broke out again and
the privileges of the Catholic cantons were restored.
While the European conflicts were on in the 17-18.
century, the faithful division and mercenary creature played
a crucial role in maintaining Switzerland's neutrality,
which gradually became a condition of existence for the
Federation. The policy of armed neutrality - which has
existed until today - was formulated for the first time by
the Reichstag in 1674.