Switzerland is a small European country known for its beautiful, snow-capped
mountains and freedom-loving people. The Alps and the Jura Mountains cover more
than half of Switzerland.
But most of the Swiss people live on a plateau that extends across the middle of
the country between the two mountain ranges. In this region are most of
Switzerland's industries and its richest farmlands. Switzerland's capital, Bern,
and largest city, Zurich, are also there.
A Short Background
Switzerland's independence and neutrality have long been honored by the major
European powers and Switzerland 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, may be
rendering obsolete the country's concern for neutrality.
||Central Europe, east of France,
north of Italy
||47 00 N, 8 00 E
||7,283,274 (July 2001 est.)
||noun: Swiss (singular
||German 65%, French 18%, Italian
Romansch 1%, other 6%
||Roman Catholic 46.1%,
other 5%, none 8.9% (1990)
||German (official) 63.7%, French
Italian (official) 7.6%, Romansch 0.6%, other 8.9%
||Swiss franc (CHF)
||1 EURO to Swiss Franc: 1.54600
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