Swiss Constitution/Part 1

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Swiss Constitution of April 19 1999
Preamble and Title 1
The Federal Constitution of the Swiss Confederation (German: Bundesverfassung der Schweizerischen Eidgenossenschaft, French: Constitution fédérale de la Confédération suisse, Italian: Constituzione federale della Confederazione Svizzera, Romansh: Constituziun federala da la Confederaziun svizra) is at the highest level of Switzerland's judicial system. It regulates laws, regulations, and decrees of the federation, the cantons, and communities. Cantonal constitutions may not contradict the federal constitution. Amendments to the constitution require the assent of a majority of the people and of the cantons. Excerpted from Swiss Federal Constitution on Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.


In the name of God Almighty!

We, the Swiss People and Cantons, whereas, we are mindful of our responsibility towards creation; resolve to renew our alliance to strengthen liberty and democracy, independence and peace in solidarity and openness towards the world; are determined to live our diversity in unity respecting one another; are conscious of our common achievements and our responsibility towards future generations; and know that only those remain free who use their freedom, and that the strength of a people is measured by the welfare of the weakest of its members; now, therefore, we adopt the following Constitution:

Title 1: General Provisions[edit]

Art. 1 Swiss Confederation[edit]

The Swiss People and the Cantons of Zurich, Berne, Lucerne, Uri, Schwyz, Obwald and Nidwald, Glarus, Zug, Fribourg, Solothurn, Basel City and Basel Land, Schaffhausen, Appenzell Outer Rhodes and Appenzell Inner Rhodes, St. Gall, Grisons, Aargau, Thurgau, Ticino, Vaud, Valais, Neuchâtel, Geneva, and Jura, form the Swiss Confederation.

Art. 2 Purpose[edit]

  1. The Swiss Confederation shall protect the liberty and the rights of the people, and shall ensure the independence and security of the country.
  2. It shall promote the common welfare, the sustainable development, the inner cohesion, and the cultural diversity of the country.
  3. It shall ensure equal opportunities for all citizens to the extent possible.
  4. It shall strive to secure the long-term preservation of natural resources, and to promote a just and peaceful international order.

Art. 3 Cantons[edit]

The Cantons are sovereign insofar as their sovereignty is not limited by the Federal Constitution; they shall exercise all rights which are not transferred to the Confederation.

Art. 4 National Languages[edit]

The national languages are German, French, Italian, and Romansh.

Art. 5 Rule of Law[edit]

  1. The state’s activities shall be based on and limited by the Rule of Law.
  2. State activity must be in the public interest and proportional to the goals pursued.
  3. State organs and private persons must act in good faith.
  4. The Confederation and the Cantons shall respect international law.

Art. 6 Individual and Social Responsibility[edit]

All persons are responsible for themselves, and shall make use of their abilities to contribute to achieving the goals of state and society.