Year Founded: 1815
The Swiss Confederation, also known as Switzerland, is a land-locked state in Western Europe with most of its population and major cities located on the Swiss Plateau. It is best known for its status as a permanently neutral country. The state announced permanent neutrality in 1815. At first the state hired mercenaries to provide national defense before it adopted armed neutrality. It successfully defended itself and avoided involvement in military conflict during WWI and WWII. As one of the richest countries in the world, Switzerland ranks among the top three countries in the world, be it its GDP per capita, or its ranking on the Human Development Index and the World Happiness Report. It is the first country in the world which decided UN membership through public referendum. And its decision against joining the EU was also made through multiple public referendums.