Luxembourg the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg, is a small landlocked country in western Europe. It is bordered by Belgium to the west and north, Germany to the east, France to the south, its capital, Luxembourg City, is one of the three official capitals of the European Union and the seat of the European Court of Justice, the highest judicial authority in the EU. Its culture and languages are intertwined with its neighbours, making it a mixture of French and German cultures, as evident by the nation's three official languages: French and the national language, Luxembourgish; the repeated invasions by Germany in World War II, resulted in the country's strong will for mediation between France and Germany and, among other things, led to the foundation of the European Union. With an area of 2,586 square kilometres, it is one of the smallest sovereign states in Europe. In 2018, Luxembourg had a population of 602,005, which makes it one of the least-populous countries in Europe, but by far the one with the highest population growth rate.
Foreigners account for nearly half of Luxembourg's population. As a representative democracy with a constitutional monarch, it is headed by Grand Duke Henri and is the world's only remaining grand duchy. Luxembourg is a developed country, with an advanced economy and one of the world's highest GDP per capita; the City of Luxembourg with its old quarters and fortifications was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994 due to the exceptional preservation of the vast fortifications and the old city. The history of Luxembourg is considered to begin in 963, when count Siegfried I acquired a rocky promontory and its Roman-era fortifications known as Lucilinburhuc, ′little castle′, the surrounding area from the Imperial Abbey of St. Maximin in nearby Trier. Siegfried's descendants increased their territory through marriage and vassal relations. At the end of the 13th century, the Counts of Luxembourg reigned over a considerable territory. In 1308, Henry VII, Count of Luxembourg became King of the Germans and Holy Roman Emperor.
The House of Luxembourg produced four Holy Roman Emperors during the high Middle Ages. In 1354, Charles IV elevated the County to the Duchy of Luxembourg. Since Sigismund had no male heir, the Duchy became part of the Burgundian Circle and one of the Seventeen Provinces of the Habsburg Netherlands. Over the centuries, the City and Fortress of Luxembourg, of great strategic importance situated between the Kingdom of France and the Habsburg territories, was built up to be one of the most reputed fortifications in Europe. After belonging to both the France of Louis XIV and the Austria of Maria Theresia, Luxembourg became part of the First French Republic and Empire under Napoleon; the present-day state of Luxembourg first emerged at the Congress of Vienna in 1815. The Grand-Duchy, with its powerful fortress, became an independent state under the personal possession of William I of the Netherlands with a Prussian garrison to guard the city against another invasion from France. In 1839, following the turmoil of the Belgian Revolution, the purely French-speaking part of Luxembourg was ceded to Belgium and the Luxembourgish-speaking part became what is the present state of Luxembourg.
Luxembourg is a founding member of the European Union, OECD, United Nations, NATO, Benelux. The city of Luxembourg, the country's capital and largest city, is the seat of several institutions and agencies of the EU. Luxembourg served on the United Nations Security Council for the years 2013 and 2014, a first in the country's history; as of 2018, Luxembourgish citizens had visa-free or visa-on-arrival access to 186 countries and territories, ranking the Luxembourgish passport 5th in the world, tied with Austria, the Netherlands, Portugal, the United Kingdom and the United States. The recorded history of Luxembourg begins with the acquisition of Lucilinburhuc situated on the Bock rock by Siegfried, Count of Ardennes, in 963 through an exchange act with St. Maximin's Abbey, Trier. Around this fort, a town developed, which became the centre of a state of great strategic value. In the 14th and early 15th centuries, three members of the House of Luxembourg reigned as Holy Roman Emperors. In 1437, the House of Luxembourg suffered a succession crisis, precipitated by the lack of a male heir to assume the throne, which led to the territories being sold by Duchess Elisabeth to Philip the Good of Burgundy.
In the following centuries, Luxembourg's fortress was enlarged and strengthened by its successive occupants, the Bourbons, Habsburgs and the French. After the defeat of Napoleon in 1815, Luxembourg was disputed between Prussia and the Netherlands; the Congress of Vienna formed Luxembourg as a Grand Duchy within the German Confederation. The Dutch king became, in the grand duke. Although he was supposed to rule the grand duchy as an independent country with an administration of its own, in reality he treated it to a Dutch province; the Fortress of Luxembourg was manned by Prussian troops for the German Confederation. This arrangement was revised by the 1839 First Treaty of London, from which date Luxembourg's full independence is reckoned. At the time of the Belgian Revolution of 1830–1839, by the 1839 Treaty establishing full independence, Luxembourg's territory was reduced by more than half, as the predominantly francophone western part of the country was transferred to Belgium. In 1842 Luxembourg joined the German Customs Union (Zoll
Sandweiler German war cemetery
The Sandweiler German war cemetery is a World War II cemetery in Sandweiler, in southern Luxembourg. It contains the graves of 10,913 German servicemen from the Battle of the Bulge in winter 1944 and spring 1945. Of these, 5,599 were buried by the American war graves service during the war. Following an agreement reached in 1952 between the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the Federal Republic of Germany, 5,286 bodies were moved to Sandweiler from 150 different cemeteries throughout Luxembourg, they had lain in mass graves for which only incomplete records were available and the German War Graves Commission set about identifying as many as possible. As a result, 4,014 of the 4,829 in the communal comrades' graves are now listed. Planning for the cemetery began in May 1952, it was inaugurated on 5 June 1955, ten years after the end of the war; the ceremonial opening took place in the presence of more than 2,000 relatives of the dead, whom the Volksbund had brought to Sandweiler in special trains.
With them came delegations of school children from every German federal state. In 2005, a special ceremony attended by civil and military representatives from Luxembourg and Germany as well as members of youth groups, took place to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the inauguration of the cemetery; the last remains interred were those of an unknown German soldier discovered in the forests of Schumann's Eck near Wiltz in late 2007. Sandweiler booklet, German War Graves Commission War cemeteries on the Luxembourg-German border Webpage on the cemetery in German, with photos
Cargolux Cargolux Airlines International S. A. is a Luxembourgish cargo airline with its hub at Luxembourg Airport. With a global network, it is one of the largest scheduled all-cargo airlines in Europe. Charter flights and third party maintenance are operated; the airline was established in March 1970 by Luxair, the Salen Shipping Group, Loftleiðir and various private interests in Luxembourg. Einar Olafsson was the airline's first employee and CEO, it started operations in May 1970 with one Canadair CL-44 freighter with services from Luxembourg to Hong Kong. Over the next two years, the airline grew. By 1973, Cargolux had five CL-44s and made the leap into the jet age by acquiring a Douglas DC-8; this enabled the company to speed up its cargo deliveries. In 1974, Loftleiðir and Cargolux amalgamated their maintenance and engineering departments, by 1975, Cargolux enjoyed new facilities consisting of central offices and two hangars. In 1978, the airline began to take shape into the company; the CL-44s began to be retired and the airline ordered its first Boeing 747s.
In that same year it began flying to other places in Asia, as well as to the United States. In 1979, as the company concluded its first decade, its first Boeing 747s were delivered. In 1982, China Airlines became the first airline company to sign a strategic alliance with Cargolux. 1983 saw the introduction of CHAMP and the start of some charter passenger flights for the Hajj pilgrimage. 1984 saw the departure of the last Douglas DC-8 in the fleet and the addition of a third Boeing 747. Lufthansa bought a 24.5% share of the airline in 1987 and Luxair increased its share to 24.53%. 1988 saw the birth of a passenger charter airline established by both Cargolux and Luxair. The airline had two Boeing 747s but Cargolux's venture into the charter airline world proved unsuccessful and soon Lion Air folded. Despite that setback, Cargolux made it into the 1990s in proper financial shape, it added two more Boeing 747s in 1990, as a way of celebrating its 20th anniversary, in 1993, three Boeing 747-400Fs arrived at Luxembourg.
In 1995 Cargolux had a year-long celebration of its 25th anniversary and Heiner Wilkens was named CEO and President. In 1997, Luxair was able to increase its share to 34%, while in September that year Lufthansa sold its 24.5% stake to Sair Logistics. The following year Sair Logistics increased its share to 33%. By 1999, Cargolux's fleet had reached double figures, with 10 Boeing 747s. In 2000 a route was opened to Seoul, South Korea, in 2001 Wilkens decided to step down as President and CEO of the air company. In October 2010, Ulrich Ogiermann, the chief executive officer of Cargolux was indicted on suspicion of price-fixing. In November 2010, Cargolux was fined, by the European Commission. On 8 September 2011, Qatar Airways purchased a 35% share in the company making it the second largest shareholder after Luxair; the other shareholders were the Banque et Caisse d'Epargne de l'Etat and the Société Nationale de Crédit et d'Investissement. In November 2012 Qatar Airways announced plans to sell its stake after strategic differences with other major shareholders such as whether the interim CEO and CFO, Richard Forson, should become the permanent CEO.
Unions had claimed Forson was a Qatar Airways representative after comments he made about relocating maintenance to the Middle East and rumours of plans for aircraft to be re-registered in Qatar. Qatar Airways sold its share to the Government of Luxembourg, which sold that share to Henan Civil Aviation Development and Investment, a Chinese company, in 2014; as part of that agreement, Cargolux launched a service from Luxembourg to Zhengzhou in Henan. In 2017, Cargolux entered into a joint venture with Henan Civil Aviation Development and Investment to create Henan Cargo Airlines, holds a 25% stake in the operation. On 17 September 2011 Cargolux announced that it would not accept the first two Boeing 747-8F aircraft it had ordered, scheduled for delivery within a few days, due to "unresolved contractual issues between Boeing and " concerning the aircraft. After resolving their contractual issues, Boeing handed over the first 747-8F to Cargolux in Everett, Washington on 12 October 2011; the freighter flew to Seattle–Tacoma International Airport and picked up cargo before flying to Luxembourg.
Cargo 2000 — an industry group within the International Air Transport Association consisting of some 80 major airlines, freight forwarders, ground handling agents, trucking companies and IT providers — announced on 15 March 2012 at its annual general meeting, that Cargolux Airlines International S. A. had gained Cargo 2000 platinum membership status. As of August 2017, the Cargolux fleet consists of the following aircraft: Canadair CL-44 Douglas DC-8-63CF Boeing 747-100F Boeing 747-200F Boeing 747-400F On 21 January 2010, Cargolux Flight 7933 landed on a vehicle, on an active runway. There was no fatalities in the crash. Three investigations were launched into the accident; the cause was found to be error by Air Traffic Control. On 30 March 2017, a Cargolux Boeing 747-8F operating as Flight 775 arrived at Prestwick Airport near Glasgow in Scotland carrying a Bell 412EP helicopter from Houston, Texas; the helicopter was observed to have leaked fuel into the cargo hold amounting to more than 300 litres.
The fuel caused substantial damage. The aircraft returned to service a month later. Media related to Cargolux at Wikimed
Communes of Luxembourg
Luxembourg's 102 Communes conform to LAU Level 2 and are the country's lowest administrative divisions. Communes rank below cantons in Luxembourg's hierarchy of administrative subdivisions. Communes are re-arranged, being merged or divided as demanded by demographic change over time. Unlike the cantons, which have remained unchanged since their creation, the identity of the communes has not become ingrained within the geographical sensations of the average Luxembourger; the cantons are responsible for the ceremonial and statistical aspects of government, while the communes provide local government services. The municipal system was adopted when Luxembourg was annexed into the French département of Forêts in 1795. Despite ownership passing to the Netherlands, this system was maintained until it was introduced upon independence in 1843; the province of Luxembourg, which now constitutes part of Belgium, was part of Luxembourg prior to 1839 when it possessed a low degree of sovereignty. Due to Luxembourg's incorporation into the main country by its occupying powers, the modern municipal system in Luxembourg is less than two centuries old.
Luxembourg has three official languages: French and the national language Luxembourgish. Some government websites offer English versions The communes have no legislative control over matters relating to the national interest, which reside with the Chamber of Deputies. Below this level, they have wide-ranging powers; the communes provide public education, maintain the local road network and other infrastructure, ensure basic public health, provide most social security. Communes have discretionary powers for comprehensive health care within their borders, land-use planning, funds for cultural activities, provision of care to the elderly, providing a sufficient supply of water and electricity. There are 102 communes in the 12 cantons; the 12 communes with city status are Diekirch, Dudelange, Esch-sur-Alzette, Grevenmacher, Remich, Rumelange and Wiltz. Since the country's creation in 1839, eight communes have changed their name and thirty-nine communes have been merged, resulting in the 102 communes that exist today.
These defunct communes are listed in the table below. The municipal system was created during the French occupation to mirror the systems employed in the rest of the French Republic; these were overhauled in 1823, but the system itself was retained until independence, granted under the 1839 Treaty of London. The law regulating their creation and organisation dates to 24 February 1843, enshrined in the Luxembourgian constitution promulgated on 17 October 1868. Upon independence, there were 120 communes. A series of mergers and partitions between 1849 and 1891 increased this number to 130. Most of these were brought about by asymmetrical population growth, as population growth in the south caused the balance of population in the country to shift. For instance, some of the communes born in that era include Rumelange and Walferdange. In the pattern of Nordstad and Schieren were separated from Ettelbruck. Since the end of the First World War, during which Luxembourg was occupied by Germany, the number of communes has dropped steadily.
In 1920, Luxembourg City was expanded. Another wave of mergers took place in the 1970s when sparsely-populated areas in the north and west of the country were merged to form Lac de la Haute-Sûre, Wincrange. 2006 saw the creation of Kiischpelt and Tandel from four smaller communes, further reducing them to just 116. 2012 saw the creation of Käerjeng, Vallée de l'Ernz and Parc Hosingen from smaller communes, the merger of Clervaux, Esch-sur-Sûre and Schengen into adjacent ones. Eschweiler was merged into Wiltz in 2015. Following the mergers of Boevange-sur-Attert and Tuntange into the new commune of Helperknapp, the merger of Septfontaines and Hobschied into the new commune of Habscht, the merger of Rosport and Mompach into Rosport-Mompach in 2018, there are now only 102 communes. Category:Lists of communes of Luxembourg Statec. Recueil de statistiques par commune 2003. Luxembourg City: Statec. ISBN 2-87988-053-X. Archived from the original on 2007-06-10. Retrieved 2006-07-18. / "Archives of Mémorial A".
Service central de législation. Archived from the original on 2007-06-14. Retrieved 2006-07-18
Contern is a commune and town in southern Luxembourg. It is located east of Luxembourg City; as of 2007, the town of Contern, which lies in the south-west of the commune, has a population of 1,083. Other towns within the commune include Medingen, Muhlbach and Oetrange. Media related to Contern at Wikimedia Commons
Weiler-la-Tour is a commune and small town in southern Luxembourg. It is located south-east of Luxembourg City; the commune's administrative centre is Hassel. As of 2005, the town of Weiler-la-Tour, which lies in the south of the commune, has a population of 477. Other towns within the commune include Syren. Media related to Weiler-la-Tour at Wikimedia Commons
Steinsel is a commune and town in central Luxembourg. It is located north of Luxembourg City; as of 2005, the town of Steinsel, which lies in the west of the commune, has a population of 1,844. Other towns within the commune include Mullendorf. Pacé, France Media related to Steinsel at Wikimedia Commons