Luxembourg. According to
the current population of Luxembourg is 625,989. Prime Minister Xavier Bettel at a meeting
with his French colleague Manuel Valls in April offered a
grant with the funding to close the 30-year-old Cattenom
nuclear power plant near the border between the countries.
According to Bettel, an accident at Cattenom could wipe out
the whole of Luxembourg.
In the so-called Luxleaks scandal, convictions came
against three Frenchmen charged with revealing that the
Grand Duchy helped over 300 multinational corporations avoid
tax in other countries. Two former employees of the audit
firm PWC were given nine and twelve months' imprisonment on
condition, while a journalist was released. The judges were
appealed and a new trial was ongoing at the end of the year.
Luxembourg City, the capital of the Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the
headquarters of several EU institutions, such as the European Court of Justice,
the European Investment Bank, the Court of Auditors and the Secretariat of the
European Parliament; 76,420 residents (2005). The city attracts many tourists.
Extensive restoration of the city's old neighborhoods and the many bank
headquarters contributes to a sense of prosperity. The old city and the remains
of the fortress were added to UNESCO's Cultural Heritage List in 1994.
Luxembourg is 2007 as the first EU city for the second time designated as
European Capital of Culture; the first time was in 1995. The theme of mobility
and exchange of ideas across borders is unfolding in a region of over 11
million. which extends into Lorraine, Wallonia, German-speaking Belgium,
Saarland and Rhineland-Palatinate.
The city lies on several plateaus separated by deep gorges with the rivers
Alzette and Petrusse. The Pont Adolphe bridge connects the center with newer
neighborhoods in the south, while the 335 m long Pont Grande Duchesse Charlotte
bridge leads east to the Kirchberg Plateau with the European institutions. In
the canyons lie the districts of Pfaffenthal, Clausen and Grund. In the rocks
are built casemates, 21 km underground corridors, which are the remains of an
extensive fortification, mainly from the 1600's. In the city center is Notre Dame
Cathedral and Baroque Saint Michel, both from the 1600's. The grand ducal mansion
in the Spanish Renaissance style from the 1500's. was originally town hall. After
expansion in 1800-t. In addition to the residence, it also holds the Chamber of
The city has some industry and is a traffic hub with international airport.
There are also several cultural institutions and the commercial radio and
television station RTL, which has international reach. The European institutions
and the city's function as an international banking and financial center have
meant that foreigners make up more than half the population.
Luxembourg is first mentioned in 963 as the castle of Lucilinburhuc, situated
on a cliff above Alzette. This castle was at the heart of the county, later the
Duchy of Luxembourg. From the mid-1400-t. the fortress of Luxembourg was an
important part of the defense of the southern Netherlands against France. In the
years 1684-97, the French held Luxembourg after conquering the city, and the
fortress was expanded by Louis 14's engineer Vauban. 1815-67 a Prussian garrison
sat in the fortress of Luxembourg, after which it was loosened.