Iceland is a Nordic island country in the North Atlantic, with a population of 348,580 and an area of 103,000 km2, making it the most sparsely populated country in Europe. The capital and largest city is Reykjavík, with Reykjavík and the surrounding areas in the southwest of the country being home to over two-thirds of the population. Iceland is geologically active; the interior consists of a plateau characterised by sand and lava fields and glaciers, many glacial rivers flow to the sea through the lowlands. Iceland is warmed by the Gulf Stream and has a temperate climate, despite a high latitude just outside the Arctic Circle, its high latitude and marine influence keep summers chilly, with most of the archipelago having a tundra climate. According to the ancient manuscript Landnámabók, the settlement of Iceland began in 874 AD when the Norwegian chieftain Ingólfr Arnarson became the first permanent settler on the island. In the following centuries, to a lesser extent other Scandinavians, emigrated to Iceland, bringing with them thralls of Gaelic origin.
The island was governed as an independent commonwealth under the Althing, one of the world's oldest functioning legislative assemblies. Following a period of civil strife, Iceland acceded to Norwegian rule in the 13th century; the establishment of the Kalmar Union in 1397 united the kingdoms of Norway and Sweden. Iceland thus followed Norway's integration into that union, coming under Danish rule after Sweden's secession from the union in 1523. Although the Danish kingdom introduced Lutheranism forcefully in 1550, Iceland remained a distant semi-colonial territory in which Danish institutions and infrastructures were conspicuous by their absence. In the wake of the French Revolution and the Napoleonic Wars, Iceland's struggle for independence took form and culminated in independence in 1918 and the founding of a republic in 1944; until the 20th century, Iceland relied on subsistence fishing and agriculture. Industrialisation of the fisheries and Marshall Plan aid following World War II brought prosperity and Iceland became one of the wealthiest and most developed nations in the world.
In 1994, it became a part of the European Economic Area, which further diversified the economy into sectors such as finance and manufacturing. Iceland has a market economy with low taxes, compared to other OECD countries, it maintains a Nordic social welfare system that provides universal health care and tertiary education for its citizens. Iceland ranks high in economic, social stability, equality ranking first in the world by median wealth per adult. In 2018, it was ranked as the sixth most developed country in the world by the United Nations' Human Development Index, it ranks first on the Global Peace Index. Iceland runs completely on renewable energy. Hit hard by the worldwide financial crisis, the nation's entire banking system systemically failed in October 2008, leading to a severe depression, substantial political unrest, the Icesave dispute, the institution of capital controls; some bankers were jailed. Since the economy has made a significant recovery, in large part due to a surge in tourism.
A law that took effect in 2018 makes it illegal in Iceland for women to be paid less than men. Icelandic culture is founded upon the nation's Scandinavian heritage. Most Icelanders are descendants of Gaelic settlers. Icelandic, a North Germanic language, is descended from Old West Norse and is related to Faroese and West Norwegian dialects; the country's cultural heritage includes traditional Icelandic cuisine, Icelandic literature, medieval sagas. Iceland has the smallest population of any NATO member and is the only one with no standing army, with a armed coast guard; the Sagas of Icelanders say that a Norwegian named Naddodd was the first Norseman to reach Iceland, in the 9th century he named it Snæland or "snow land" because it was snowing. Following Naddodd, the Swede Garðar Svavarsson arrived, so the island was called Garðarshólmur which means "Garðar's Isle". Came a Viking named Flóki Vilgerðarson; the sagas say that the rather despondent Flóki climbed a mountain and saw a fjord full of icebergs, which led him to give the island its new and present name.
The notion that Iceland's Viking settlers chose that name to discourage oversettlement of their verdant isle is a myth. According to both Landnámabók and Íslendingabók, monks known as the Papar lived in Iceland before Scandinavian settlers arrived members of a Hiberno-Scottish mission. Recent archaeological excavations have revealed the ruins of a cabin in Hafnir on the Reykjanes peninsula. Carbon dating indicates that it was abandoned sometime between 770 and 880. In 2016, archeologists uncovered a longhouse in Stöðvarfjörður, dated to as early as 800. Swedish Viking explorer Garðar Svavarsson was the first to circumnavigate Iceland in 870 and establish that it was an island, he built a house in Húsavík. Garðar departed the following summer but one of his men, Náttfari, decided to stay behind with two slaves. Náttfari settled in what is now known as Náttfaravík and he and his slaves became the first permanent residents of Iceland; the Norwegian-Norse chieftain Ingólfr Arnarson built his homestead in present-day Reykjavík in 874.
Ingólfr was followed by many other emigrant settlers Scandinavians and their thralls, many of whom were Irish or Scottish. By 930, most arable land on the island had been claimed. Lack of arable land al
International Civil Aviation Organization
The International Civil Aviation Organization is a specialized agency of the United Nations. It codifies the principles and techniques of international air navigation and fosters the planning and development of international air transport to ensure safe and orderly growth, its headquarters is located in the Quartier International of Montreal, Canada. The ICAO Council adopts standards and recommended practices concerning air navigation, its infrastructure, flight inspection, prevention of unlawful interference, facilitation of border-crossing procedures for international civil aviation. ICAO defines the protocols for air accident investigation followed by transport safety authorities in countries signatory to the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation; the Air Navigation Commission is the technical body within ICAO. The Commission is composed of 19 Commissioners, nominated by the ICAO's contracting states, appointed by the ICAO Council. Commissioners serve as independent experts, who although nominated by their states, do not serve as state or political representatives.
The development of international Standards And Recommended Practices is done under the direction of the ANC through the formal process of ICAO Panels. Once approved by the Commission, standards are sent to the Council, the political body of ICAO, for consultation and coordination with the Member States before final adoption. ICAO is distinct from other international air transport organizations, like the International Air Transport Association, a trade association representing airlines; the forerunner to ICAO was the International Commission for Air Navigation. It held its first convention in 1903 in Berlin, but no agreements were reached among the eight countries that attended. At the second convention in 1906 held in Berlin, 27 countries attended; the third convention, held in London in 1912 allocated the first radio callsigns for use by aircraft. ICAN continued to operate until 1945. Fifty-two countries signed the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation known as the Chicago Convention, in Chicago, Illinois, on 7 December 1944.
Under its terms, a Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization was to be established, to be replaced in turn by a permanent organization when 26 countries ratified the convention. Accordingly, PICAO began operating on 6 June 1945, replacing ICAN; the 26th country ratified the Convention on 5 March 1947 and PICAO was disestablished on 4 April 1947 and replaced by ICAO, which began operations the same day. In October 1947, ICAO became an agency of the United Nations linked to the United Nations Economic and Social Council. In April 2013 Qatar offered to serve as the new permanent seat of the Organization. Qatar promised to construct a massive new headquarters for ICAO and cover all moving expenses, stating that Montreal "was too far from Europe and Asia", "had cold winters," was hard to attend due to the refusal of the Canadian government to provide visas in a timely manner, that the taxes imposed on ICAO by Canada were too high. According to The Globe and Mail, Qatar's move was at least motivated by the pro-Israel foreign policy of Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper.
One month Qatar withdrew its bid after a separate proposal to the ICAO's governing council to move the ICAO triennial conference to Doha was defeated by a vote of 22–14. The 9th edition of the Convention on International Civil Aviation includes modifications from 1948 up to year 2006. ICAO refers to its current edition of the Convention as the Statute, designates it as ICAO Document 7300/9; the Convention has 19 Annexes that are listed by title in the article Convention on International Civil Aviation. As of January 2019, there are 192 ICAO members, consisting of 191 of the 193 UN members, plus the Cook Islands. Liechtenstein has delegated Switzerland to enter into the treaty on its behalf and the treaty applies in the territory of Liechtenstein; the Republic of China was a founding member of ICAO but was replaced by People's Republic of China as the legal representative of China in 1971 and as such, did not take part in the organization. In 2013, the Republic of China was for the first time invited to attend 38th session of ICAO Assembly as a guest under the name of Chinese Taipei.
The Council of ICAO is elected by the Assembly every 3 years and consists of 36 members elected in 3 groups. The present Council was elected on 4 October 2016 at the 39th Assembly of ICAO at Montreal; the structure of the present Council is as follows: ICAO standardizes certain functions for use in the airline industry, such as the Aeronautical Message Handling System. This makes it a standards organization; each country should have an accessible Aeronautical Information Publication, based on standards defined by ICAO, containing information essential to air navigation. Countries are required to update their AIP manuals every 28 days and so provide definitive regulations and information for each country about airspace and airports. ICAO's standards dictate that temporary hazards to aircraft are published using NOTAMs. ICAO defines an International Standard Atmosphere, a model of the standard variation of pressure, temperature and viscosity with altitude in the Earth's atmosphere; this is useful in designing aircraft.
Aviation safety means the state of an aviation system or organization in which risks associated with aviation activities, related to, or in direct support of the operation of aircraft, are reduced and controlled to an acceptable level. It encompasses the theory, practice and categorization of flight failures, the prevention of such failures through regulation and training, it can be applied in the context of campaigns that inform the public as to the safety of air travel. In 1926 and 1927 there were a total of 24 fatal commercial airline crashes, a further 16 in 1928, 51 in 1929, which remains the worst year on record at an accident rate of about 1 for every 1,000,000 miles flown. Based on the current numbers flying, this would equate to 7,000 fatal incidents per year. For the ten-year period 2002 to 2011, 0.6 fatal accidents happened per one million flights globally, 0.4 per million hours flown, 22.0 fatalities per one million flights or 12.7 per million hours flown. From 310 million passengers in 1970, air transport had grown to 3,696 million in 2016, led by 823 million in the United States 488 million in China.
In 2016, there were 19 fatal accidents of civil airliners of more than 14 passengers, resulting in 325 fatalities: the second safest year after 2015 with 16 accidents and 2013 with 265 fatalities. For planes heavier than 5.7 t, there were 34.9 million departures and 75 accidents worldwide with 7 of these fatal for 182 fatalities, the lowest since 2013: 5.21 fatalities per million departures. In 2017 there were 10 fatal airliner accidents, resulting in 44 occupant fatalities and 35 persons on the ground: the safest year for commercial aviation, both by the number of fatal accidents as well as in fatalities. By 2018, fatal accidents per million flights decreased 16 fold since 1970, from 6.35 to 0.39, fatalities per trillion revenue passenger kilometre decreased 54 fold from 3,218 to 59. Runway safety represents 36% of accidents, Ground Safety 18% and Loss of Control in-Flight 16%; the main cause is Pilot in Command error. Safety has improved from better aircraft design process and maintenance, the evolution of navigation aids, safety protocols and procedures.
There are three main ways in which risk of fatality of a certain mode of travel can be measured: Deaths per billion typical journeys taken, deaths per billion hours traveled, or deaths per billion kilometers traveled. The following table displays these statistics for the United Kingdom 1990–2000. Note that aviation safety does not include the transportation to the airport; the first two statistics are computed for typical travels for respective forms of transport, so they cannot be used directly to compare risks related to different forms of transport in a particular travel "from A to B". For example: according to statistics, a typical flight from Los Angeles to New York will carry a larger risk factor than a typical car travel from home to office, but a car travel from Los Angeles to New York would not be typical. It would be as large as several dozens of typical car travels, associated risk will be larger as well; because the journey would take a much longer time, the overall risk associated by making this journey by car will be higher than making the same journey by air if each individual hour of car travel can be less risky than an hour of flight.
It is therefore important to use each statistic in a proper context. When it comes to a question about risks associated with a particular long-range travel from one city to another, the most suitable statistic is the third one, thus giving a reason to name air travel as the safest form of long-range transportation. However, if the availability of an air option makes an otherwise inconvenient journey possible this argument loses some of its force. Aviation industry insurers base their calculations on the deaths per journey statistic while the aviation industry itself uses the deaths per kilometre statistic in press releases. Since 1997 the number of fatal air accidents has been no more than 1 for every 2,000,000,000 person-miles flown, thus one of the safest modes of transportation when measured by distance traveled; the death per billion hours when skydiving assume a 6 minutes skydive. The death per billion journey when paragliding assume an average flight of 15 minutes, so 4 flights per hour.
Between 1990 and 2015, there were 1874 commuter and air taxi accidents in the U. S. of which 454 were fatal, resulting in 1296 deaths, including 674 accidents and 279 fatalities in Alaska alone. The number of deaths per passenger-mile on commercial airlines in the United States between 2000 and 2010 was about 0.2 deaths per 10 billion passenger-miles. For driving, the rate was 150 per 10 billion vehicle-miles for 2000: 750 times higher per mile than for flying in a commercial airplane. There were no fatalities on large scheduled commercial airlines in the United States for over nine years, between the Colgan Air Flight 3407 crash in February 2009, a catastrophic engine failure on Southwest Airlines Flight 1380 in April 2018. Another aspect of safety is protection from intentional harm or property damage known as security; the terrorist attacks of 2001 are not counted as accidents. However if they were counted as accidents they would have added about 2 deaths per 2,000,000,000 person-miles. Two months American Airlines Flight 587 crashed in New York City, killing 256 people includin
Member state of the European Union
The European Union consists of 28 member states. Each member state is party to the founding treaties of the union and thereby subject to the privileges and obligations of membership. Unlike members of most international organisations, the member states of the EU are subjected to binding laws in exchange for representation within the common legislative and judicial institutions. Member states must agree unanimously for the EU to adopt policies concerning defence and foreign policy. Subsidiarity is a founding principle of the EU. In 1957, six core states founded the European Economic Community; the remaining states have acceded in subsequent enlargements. On 1 July 2013, Croatia became the newest member state of the EU. To accede, a state must fulfill the economic and political requirements known as the Copenhagen criteria, which require a candidate to have a democratic, free-market government together with the corresponding freedoms and institutions, respect for the rule of law. Enlargement of the Union is contingent upon the consent of all existing members and the candidate's adoption of the existing body of EU law, known as the acquis communautaire.
There is disparity in the size and political system of member states, but all have de jure equal rights. In practice, certain states are more influential than others. While in some areas majority voting takes place where larger states have more votes than smaller ones, smaller states have disproportional representation compared to their population. No member state has withdrawn or been suspended from the EU, though some dependent territories or semi-autonomous areas have left. In June 2016, the United Kingdom held a referendum on membership of the EU, resulting in 51.89% of votes cast, being in favour of leaving. The United Kingdom government invoked Article 50 on 29 March 2017 to formally initiate the withdrawal process. Notes According to the Copenhagen criteria, membership of the European Union is open to any European country, a stable, free-market liberal democracy that respects the rule of law and human rights. Furthermore, it has to be willing to accept all the obligations of membership, such as adopting all agreed law and switching to the euro.
To join the European Union, it is required for all member states to agree. In addition to enlargement by adding new countries, the EU can expand by having territories of member states, which are outside the EU, integrate more or by a territory of a member state which had seceded and rejoined. Enlargement is, has been, a principal feature of the Union's political landscape; the EU's predecessors were founded by the "Inner Six", those countries willing to forge ahead with the Community while others remained skeptical. It was only a decade before the first countries changed their policy and attempted to join the Union, which led to the first skepticism of enlargement. French President Charles de Gaulle feared British membership would be an American Trojan horse and vetoed its application, it was only after de Gaulle left office and a 12-hour talk by British Prime Minister Edward Heath and French President Georges Pompidou took place that the United Kingdom's third application succeeded in 1970.
Applying in 1969 were the United Kingdom, Ireland and Norway. Norway, declined to accept the invitation to become a member when the electorate voted against it, leaving just the UK, Denmark to join, but despite the setbacks, the withdrawal of Greenland from Denmark's membership in 1985, three more countries joined the Communities before the end of the Cold War. In 1987, the geographical extent of the project was tested when Morocco applied, was rejected as it was not considered a European country; the year 1990 saw the Cold War drawing to a close, East Germany was welcomed into the Community as part of a reunited Germany. Shortly thereafter, the neutral countries of Austria and Sweden acceded to the newly renamed European Union, though Switzerland, which applied in 1992, froze its application due to opposition from voters while Norway, which had applied once more, had its voters reject membership again in 1994. Meanwhile, the members of the former Eastern Bloc and Yugoslavia were all starting to move towards EU membership.
Eight of these, plus Cyprus and Malta, joined in a major enlargement on 1 May 2004 symbolising the unification of Eastern and Western Europe in the EU. They were followed by Bulgaria and Romania in 2007 and Croatia in 2013; the EU has prioritised membership for the rest of the Western Balkans. Albania, North Macedonia, Montenegro and Turkey are all formally acknowledged as candidates, while Bosnia and Herzegovina and Kosovo are potential candidates. Turkish membership, pending since the 1980s, is a more contentious issue. Aside from the Cyprus dispute being a long-standing hurdle, relations between the EU and Turkey have become strained after several incidents concerning the 2016 Turkish coup d'état attempt, the Turkish referendum, the resulting 2016–17 purges in Turkey; this has led to the European Parliament calling for a suspension of membership talks. Each state has representation in the institutions of the European Union. Full membership gives the government of a member state a seat in the Council of the European Union and European Council.
When decisions are not being taken by consensus, votes are weighted so that a country with a greater population has more votes within the Coun
Conflict of interest
A conflict of interest is a situation in which a person or organization is involved in multiple interests, financial or otherwise, serving one interest could involve working against another. This relates to situations in which the personal interest of an individual or organization might adversely affect a duty owed to make decisions for the benefit of a third party; the presence of a conflict of interest is independent of the occurrence of impropriety. Therefore, a conflict of interest can be discovered and voluntarily defused before any corruption occurs. A conflict of interest exists if the circumstances are reasonably believed to create a risk that a decision may be unduly influenced by other, secondary interests, not on whether a particular individual is influenced by a secondary interest. A used definition is: "A conflict of interest is a set of circumstances that creates a risk that professional judgement or actions regarding a primary interest will be unduly influenced by a secondary interest."
Primary interest refers to the principal goals of the profession or activity, such as the protection of clients, the health of patients, the integrity of research, the duties of public officer. Secondary interest includes personal benefit and is not limited to only financial gain but such motives as the desire for professional advancement, or the wish to do favours for family and friends; these secondary interests are not treated as wrong in and of themselves, but become objectionable when they are believed to have greater weight than the primary interests. Conflict of interest rules in the public sphere focus on financial relationships since they are more objective and quantifiable, involve the political and medical fields. Judicial disqualification referred to as recusal, refers to the act of abstaining from participation in an official action such as a court case/legal proceeding due to a conflict of interest of the presiding court official or administrative officer. Applicable statutes or canons of ethics may provide standards for recusal in a given proceeding or matter.
Providing that the judge or presiding officer must be free from disabling conflicts of interest makes the fairness of the proceedings less to be questioned. In the legal profession, the duty of loyalty owed to a client prohibits an attorney from representing any other party with interests adverse to those of a current client; the few exceptions to this rule require informed written consent from all affected clients, i.e. an "ethical wall". In some circumstances, a conflict of interest can never be waived by a client. In the most common example encountered by the general public, the same firm should not represent both parties in a divorce or child custody matter. Found conflict can lead to denial or disgorgement of legal fees, or in some cases, criminal proceedings. In 1998, a Milbank, Hadley & McCloy partner was found guilty of failing to disclose a conflict of interest and sentenced to 15 months of imprisonment. In the United States, a law firm cannot represent a client if the client's interests conflict with those of another client if the two clients are represented by separate lawyers within the firm, unless the lawyer is segregated from the rest of the firm for the duration of the conflict.
Law firms employ software in conjunction with their case management and accounting systems in order to meet their duties to monitor their conflict of interest exposure and to assist in obtaining waivers. More conflicts of interest can be defined as any situation in which an individual or corporation is in a position to exploit a professional or official capacity in some way for their personal or corporate benefit. Depending upon the law or rules related to a particular organization, the existence of a conflict of interest may not, in and of itself, be evidence of wrongdoing. In fact, for many professionals, it is impossible to avoid having conflicts of interest from time to time. A conflict of interest can, become a legal matter, for example, when an individual tries influencing the outcome of a decision, for personal benefit. A director or executive of a corporation will be subject to legal liability if a conflict of interest breaches his/her duty of loyalty. There is confusion over these two situations.
Someone accused of a conflict of interest may deny that a conflict exists because he/she did not act improperly. In fact, a conflict of interest can exist if there are no improper acts as a result of it; as an example, in the sphere of business and control, according to the Institute of Internal Auditors: conflict of interest is a situation in which an internal auditor, in a position of trust, has a competing professional or personal interest. Such competing interests can make it difficult to fulfill her duties impartially. A conflict of interest exists if no unethical or improper act results. A conflict of interest can create an appearance of impropriety that can undermine confidence in the internal auditor, the internal audit activity, the profession. A conflict of interest could
Cologne is the largest city of Germany's most populous federal state of North Rhine-Westphalia, its 1 million+ inhabitants make it the fourth most populous city in Germany after Berlin and Munich. The largest city on the Rhine, it is the most populous city both of the Rhine-Ruhr Metropolitan Region, Germany's largest and one of Europe's major metropolitan areas, of the Rhineland. Centred on the left bank of the Rhine, Cologne is about 45 kilometres southeast of North Rhine-Westphalia's capital of Düsseldorf and 25 kilometres northwest of Bonn, it is the largest city in the Central Ripuarian dialect areas. The city's famous Cologne Cathedral is the seat of the Catholic Archbishop of Cologne. There are many institutions of higher education in the city, most notably the University of Cologne, one of Europe's oldest and largest universities, the Technical University of Cologne, Germany's largest university of applied sciences, the German Sport University Cologne, Germany's only sport university.
Cologne Bonn Airport lies in the southeast of the city. The main airport for the Rhine-Ruhr region is Düsseldorf Airport. Cologne was founded and established in Ubii territory in the 1st century AD as the Roman Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium, the first word of, the origin of its name. An alternative Latin name of the settlement is Augusta Ubiorum, after the Ubii. "Cologne", the French version of the city's name, has become standard in English as well. The city functioned as the capital of the Roman province of Germania Inferior and as the headquarters of the Roman military in the region until occupied by the Franks in 462. During the Middle Ages it flourished on one of the most important major trade routes between east and west in Europe. Cologne was one of the leading members of the Hanseatic League and one of the largest cities north of the Alps in medieval and Renaissance times. Prior to World War II the city had undergone several occupations by the French and by the British. Cologne was one of the most bombed cities in Germany during World War II, with the Royal Air Force dropping 34,711 long tons of bombs on the city.
The bombing reduced the population by 95% due to evacuation, destroyed the entire city. With the intention of restoring as many historic buildings as possible, the successful postwar rebuilding has resulted in a mixed and unique cityscape. Cologne is a major cultural centre for the Rhineland. Exhibitions range from local ancient Roman archeological sites to contemporary graphics and sculpture; the Cologne Trade Fair hosts a number of trade shows such as Art Cologne, imm Cologne and the Photokina. The first urban settlement on the grounds of modern-day Cologne was Oppidum Ubiorum, founded in 38 BC by the Ubii, a Cisrhenian Germanic tribe. In 50 AD, the Romans founded Colonia Claudia Ara Agrippinensium on the river Rhine and the city became the provincial capital of Germania Inferior in 85 AD. Considerable Roman remains can be found in present-day Cologne near the wharf area, where a 1,900-year-old Roman boat was discovered in late 2007. From 260 to 271 Cologne was the capital of the Gallic Empire under Postumus and Victorinus.
In 310 under emperor Constantine I a bridge was built over the Rhine at Cologne. Roman imperial governors resided in the city and it became one of the most important trade and production centres in the Roman Empire north of the Alps. Cologne is shown on the 4th century Peutinger Map. Maternus, elected as bishop in 313, was the first known bishop of Cologne; the city was the capital of a Roman province until it was occupied by the Ripuarian Franks in 462. Parts of the original Roman sewers are preserved underneath the city, with the new sewerage system having opened in 1890. Early medieval Cologne was part of Austrasia within the Frankish Empire. In 716, Charles Martel commanded an army for the first time and suffered the only defeat of his life when Chilperic II, King of Neustria, invaded Austrasia and the city fell to him in the Battle of Cologne. Charles fled to the Eifel mountains, rallied supporters, took the city back that same year after defeating Chilperic in the Battle of Amblève. Cologne had been the seat of a bishop since the Roman period.
In 843, Cologne became a city within the Treaty of Verdun-created East Francia. In 953, the archbishops of Cologne first gained noteworthy secular power, when bishop Bruno was appointed as duke by his brother Otto I, King of Germany. In order to weaken the secular nobility, who threatened his power, Otto endowed Bruno and his successors on the bishop's see with the prerogatives of secular princes, thus establishing the Electorate of Cologne, formed by the temporal possessions of the archbishopric and included in the end a strip of territory along the left Bank of the Rhine east of Jülich, as well as the Duchy of Westphalia on the other side of the Rhine, beyond Berg and Mark. By the end of the 12th century, the Archbishop of Cologne was one of the seven electors of the Holy Roman Emperor. Besides being prince elector, he was Arch-chancellor of Italy as well, technically from 1238 and permanently from 1263 until 1803. Following the Battle of Worringen in 1288, Cologne gained its independence from the archbishops and became a Free City.
Archbishop Sigfried II von Westerburg was forced to reside in Bonn. The archbishop preserv
Switzerland the Swiss Confederation, is a country situated in western and southern Europe. It consists of 26 cantons, the city of Bern is the seat of the federal authorities; the sovereign state is a federal republic bordered by Italy to the south, France to the west, Germany to the north, Austria and Liechtenstein to the east. Switzerland is a landlocked country geographically divided between the Alps, the Swiss Plateau and the Jura, spanning a total area of 41,285 km2. While the Alps occupy the greater part of the territory, the Swiss population of 8.5 million people is concentrated on the plateau, where the largest cities are to be found: among them are the two global cities and economic centres Zürich and Geneva. The establishment of the Old Swiss Confederacy dates to the late medieval period, resulting from a series of military successes against Austria and Burgundy. Swiss independence from the Holy Roman Empire was formally recognized in the Peace of Westphalia in 1648; the country has a history of armed neutrality going back to the Reformation.
It pursues an active foreign policy and is involved in peace-building processes around the world. In addition to being the birthplace of the Red Cross, Switzerland is home to numerous international organisations, including the second largest UN office. On the European level, it is a founding member of the European Free Trade Association, but notably not part of the European Union, the European Economic Area or the Eurozone. However, it participates in the Schengen Area and the European Single Market through bilateral treaties. Spanning the intersection of Germanic and Romance Europe, Switzerland comprises four main linguistic and cultural regions: German, French and Romansh. Although the majority of the population are German-speaking, Swiss national identity is rooted in a common historical background, shared values such as federalism and direct democracy, Alpine symbolism. Due to its linguistic diversity, Switzerland is known by a variety of native names: Schweiz. On coins and stamps, the Latin name – shortened to "Helvetia" – is used instead of the four national languages.
Switzerland is one of the most developed countries in the world, with the highest nominal wealth per adult and the eighth-highest per capita gross domestic product according to the IMF. Switzerland ranks at or near the top globally in several metrics of national performance, including government transparency, civil liberties, quality of life, economic competitiveness and human development. Zürich and Basel have all three been ranked among the top ten cities in the world in terms of quality of life, with the first ranked second globally, according to Mercer in 2018; the English name Switzerland is a compound containing Switzer, an obsolete term for the Swiss, in use during the 16th to 19th centuries. The English adjective Swiss is a loan from French Suisse in use since the 16th century; the name Switzer is from the Alemannic Schwiizer, in origin an inhabitant of Schwyz and its associated territory, one of the Waldstätten cantons which formed the nucleus of the Old Swiss Confederacy. The Swiss began to adopt the name for themselves after the Swabian War of 1499, used alongside the term for "Confederates", used since the 14th century.
The data code for Switzerland, CH, is derived from Latin Confoederatio Helvetica. The toponym Schwyz itself was first attested in 972, as Old High German Suittes perhaps related to swedan ‘to burn’, referring to the area of forest, burned and cleared to build; the name was extended to the area dominated by the canton, after the Swabian War of 1499 came to be used for the entire Confederation. The Swiss German name of the country, Schwiiz, is homophonous to that of the canton and the settlement, but distinguished by the use of the definite article; the Latin name Confoederatio Helvetica was neologized and introduced after the formation of the federal state in 1848, harking back to the Napoleonic Helvetic Republic, appearing on coins from 1879, inscribed on the Federal Palace in 1902 and after 1948 used in the official seal.. Helvetica is derived from the Helvetii, a Gaulish tribe living on the Swiss plateau before the Roman era. Helvetia appears as a national personification of the Swiss confederacy in the 17th century with a 1672 play by Johann Caspar Weissenbach.
Switzerland has existed as a state in its present form since the adoption of the Swiss Federal Constitution in 1848. The precursors of Switzerland established a protective alliance at the end of the 13th century, forming a loose confederation of states which persisted for centuries; the oldest traces of hominid existence in Switzerland date back about 150,000 years. The oldest known farming settlements in Switzerland, which were found at Gächlingen, have been dated to around 5300 BC; the earliest known cultural tribes of the area were members of the Hallstatt and La Tène cultures, named after the archaeological site of La Tène on the north side of Lake Neuchâtel. La Tène culture developed and flourished during the late Iron Age from around 450 BC under some influence from the Gree