Update: 19.08.2011

Freedom of marriage / Forced marriage 

On this page you will find legal guarantees and other regulations from the Swiss Federal Constitution, the European and international human rights treaties and further documents under international law. This list is not intended to be exhaustive, as regulations from other regional treaties and topically similar safeguarding provisions of international humanitarian law are not included.

Federal Constitution  of the Swiss Confederation of 18 April 1999 (Status as of 1 January 2011)

(English is not an official language of the Swiss Confederation. This translation is provided for information purposes only and has no legal force.)

Article 14 (Right to marry and to have a family): The right to marry and to have a family is guaranteed.

European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms

Article 12 (Right to marry): Men and women of marriageable age have the right to marry and to found a family, according to the national laws governing the exercise of this right.

Universal Declaration of Human Rights 

Article 16: (1) Men and women of full age, without any limitation due to race, nationality or religion, have the right to marry and to found a family. They are entitled to equal rights as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution.
(2) Marriage shall be entered into only with the free and full consent of the intending spouses.
(3) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State. 

International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights

Article 10: The States Parties to the present Covenant recognize that: (1) The widest possible protection and assistance should be accorded to the family, which is the natural and fundamental group unit of society, particularly for its establishment and while it is responsible for the care and education of dependent children. Marriage must be entered into with the free consent of the intending spouses.
(2) Special protection should be accorded to mothers during a reasonable period before and after childbirth. During such period working mothers should be accorded paid leave or leave with adequate social security benefits.
(3) Special measures of protection and assistance should be taken on behalf of all children and young persons without any discrimination for reasons of parentage or other conditions. Children and young persons should be protected from economic and social exploitation. Their employment in work harmful to their morals or health or dangerous to life or likely to hamper their normal development should be punishable by law. States should also set age limits below which the paid employment of child labour should be prohibited and punishable by law. 

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights

Article 23: (1) The family is the natural and fundamental group unit of society and is entitled to protection by society and the State.
(2) The right of men and women of marriageable age to marry and to found a family shall be recognized.
(3) No marriage shall be entered into without the free and full consent of the intending spouses.
(4) States Parties to the present Covenant shall take appropriate steps to ensure equality of rights and responsibilities of spouses as to marriage, during marriage and at its dissolution. In the case of dissolution, provision shall be made for the necessary protection of any children.

International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination

Article 5: In compliance with the fundamental obligations laid down in article 2 of this Convention, States Parties undertake to prohibit and to eliminate racial discrimination in all its forms and to guarantee the right of everyone, without distinction as to race, colour, or national or ethnic origin, to equality before the law, notably in the enjoyment of the following rights: [...]
(d) Other civil rights, in particular: [...]
(iv) The right to marriage and choice of spouse;

Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women

Article 16: (1) States Parties shall take all appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against women in all matters relating to marriage and family relations and in particular shall ensure, on a basis of equality of men and women:
(a) The same right to enter into marriage;
(b) The same right freely to choose a spouse and to enter into marriage only with their free and full consent;
(c) The same rights and responsibilities during marriage and at its dissolution;
[...]
(2) The betrothal and the marriage of a child shall have no legal effect, and all necessary action, including legislation, shall be taken to specify a minimum age for marriage and to make the registration of marriages in an official registry compulsory.

Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Article 23 (Respect for home and the family): (1) States Parties shall take effective and appropriate measures to eliminate discrimination against persons with disabilities in all matters relating to marriage, family, parenthood and relationships, on an equal basis with others, so as to ensure that:
(a) The right of all persons with disabilities who are of marriageable age to marry and to found a family on the basis of free and full consent of the intending spouses is recognized; [...]

Sources:

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