Who Is the Ruler of Switzerland

The municipalities of Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden were inhabited by a large number of free farmers. Originally, secular or ecclesiastical lords had sent them to clear the forests and cultivate the land in the harsh environmental conditions of the Alpine valleys. The problems of grazing land use, overgrazing, deforestation and natural disasters such as landslides, floods and avalanches were too complex for a single person or family to solve. Far from their overlords, these peasants formed relatively independent valley cooperatives, in which assemblies of all free men (Landsgemeinden) from the ranks of the local oligarchy elected Landammann. Solemn oaths held these communities together, and cattle ranching brought in considerable income. Their relative autonomy was strengthened by the Hohenstaufen kings and emperors, who privileged these rural communities and made them directly crown subjects in order to keep the routes between Swabia and Italy clear, especially the Gotthard Pass, which was opened after 1200 by the construction of bold bridges. As a candidate for empire and ruler of the northern approach to the Gotthard, the House of Habsburg showed increasing interest in the same region. With the opening of an important new north-south trade route through the Alps in the early 13th century, imperial rulers began to attach more importance to remote Swiss mountain valleys, which gained some degree of autonomy under direct imperial rule. Fearing the popular unrest that erupted after the death of the Holy Roman Emperor in 1291, the ruling families of Uri, Schwyz and Unterwalden signed a charter for the preservation of public peace and mutual support in maintaining an autonomous administrative and judicial regime. The anniversary of the signing of the charter (1 August 1291) is now celebrated as Switzerland`s national holiday.

The enlargement of the Confederation followed the same logic and promised help against external and internal dangers. Sometimes joining Confederation was the result of discord within a city; Thus, in 1351, after a guild revolution against the pro-Habsburg nobility, Zurich became a member of the alliance. In the resulting treaty, joint arbitration was first established as a means of settling disputes between the cantons. Lucerne joined the league in 1332; Zug and Glarus became allies for the first time in 1352, but did not become permanent members until 1365 and 1388. Although these cantons were direct neighbours of the forest cantons, Bern, which joined them in 1353, lies to the west and faces west. The new members strengthened the Confederation with additional income, manpower, and political and strategic capabilities. With decisive military victories in the battles of Sempach (1386) and Näfels (1388), the Confederation repelled the Habsburgs` claims and further weakened the power and prestige of the local nobility who depended on it. Around the same time, two common concordats were concluded: the Pfaffenbrief (1370), which protected the passage through the Gotthard Pass, prevented private quarrels and regulated relations between secular and religious authorities, and the Letter of Sempach (Sempach Agreement, 1393), which aimed to prevent private war by imposing common rules on all members of the League. In the army, Hans-Rudolf Merz held the rank of major. But there has been no real movement on open issues between the two sides. In Switzerland, neither the left nor the right dared to take the plunge.

Brussels and Bern looked at each other with suspicion. Cassis took advantage of this time to set new priorities for development aid. The importance of Latin America has been downgraded and measures to reduce migration have been given greater weight in development assistance. He has set foreign policy priorities: China and the Middle East. It has also expanded the Swiss diplomatic network. Calmy-Rey was born in Sion in the canton of Valais, the son of Charles and Adeline Rey. She graduated from Saint-Maurice in 1963 and graduated in political science from the Graduate Institute of International Studies (HEI) in 1968. In 1966, she married André Calmy. They have two children. Professional career During his doctoral thesis, he worked as a lecturer at the Research Institute for Regional Economic Development of the University of Neuchâtel. Subsequently, he was a visiting researcher at the Institute of International Economics in Hamburg before becoming strategic advisor at the Department of Economics of the Canton of Neuchâtel.

In 2006, he became an independent consultant in strategy and communication, mainly for associations, companies and NGOs.