Related Rule
Switzerland
Practice Relating to Rule 160. Statutes of Limitation
Switzerland’s Regulation on Legal Bases for Conduct during an Engagement (2005) states:
235 According to the provisions of the Swiss Penal Code and Military Criminal Code, no statute of limitations applies to genocide and war crimes described as grave by the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 (Geneva Conventions I–IV) and other international agreements on the protection of war victims ratified by Switzerland.
239 The [1998 ICC] Statute, i.e. the treaty establishing the International Criminal Court, has defined even more precisely the constitutive elements of genocide and war crimes. That Statute provides the legal basis for the permanent International Criminal Court in The Hague, which is responsible for adjudicating genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, and the crime of aggression, i.e. an illegal attack against a State. No statute of limitations applies to these offences. 
Switzerland, Bases légales du comportement à l’engagement (BCE), Règlement 51.007/IVf, Swiss Army, issued based on Article 10 of the Ordinance on the Organization of the Federal Department for Defence, Civil Protection and Sports of 7 March 2003, entry into force on 1 July 2005, §§ 235 and 239.
[emphasis in original]
Switzerland’s Military Criminal Code (1927), as amended, provides:
[The following acts] are not subject to statutes of limitation:
1. Crimes aiming at the extermination or oppression of a group of the population because of its nationality, race, religion or because of its ethnic, social or political affiliation;
2. Serious crimes under the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and other international agreements relating to the protection of victims of war to which Switzerland is a party, if the offence under examination is particularly serious because of the conditions under which it was committed;
3. Crimes committed with the aim of exercising duress or extortion and which put in danger or threaten to put in danger the life and physical integrity of persons, in particular by the use of means of massive destruction, the triggering of a catastrophe or the taking of hostages. 
Switzerland, Military Criminal Code, 1927, as amended, Article 56 bis.
Switzerland’s Penal Code (1937), as amended, contains an identical provision. 
Switzerland, Penal Code, 1937, as amended, Article 75 bis.
Switzerland’s Military Criminal Code (1927), as amended in 2007, states:
[The following acts] are not subject to statutes of limitation:
a. crimes aiming at the extermination or oppression of a group of the population because of its nationality, race, religion or because of its ethnic, social or political affiliation;
b. serious crimes under the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and other international agreements relating to the protection of victims of war to which Switzerland is a party, if the offence is particularly serious because of the conditions in which it was committed;
c. crimes committed with the aim of exercising duress or extortion and which put in danger or threaten to put in danger the life and physical integrity of a large number of persons, in particular by using means of massive destruction, by triggering a catastrophe or by taking hostages. 
Switzerland, Military Criminal Code, 1927, as amended in 2007, Article 59(1).
Switzerland’s Military Criminal Code (1927), taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, states under the title “Limitation”:
Art. 59
1 Not subject to limitation are:
a. genocide (art. 108);
b. crimes against humanity (art. 109, para. 1and 2)
c. war crimes (art. 111 para. 1 to 3, 112 para. 1 and 2, 112a para. 1 and 2, 112b, 112c para. 1 and 2, and 112d);
d. crimes committed with the aim of exercising duress or extortion and which put in danger or threaten to put in danger the life and physical integrity of a large number of persons, in particular by using means of massive destruction, by triggering a catastrophe or by taking hostages. 
Switzerland, Military Criminal Code, 1927, taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, Article 59(1).
[footnotes in original omitted]
Switzerland’s Penal Code (1937), as amended in 2009, states:
[The following acts] are not subject to statutes of limitation:
1. Crimes aiming at the extermination or oppression of a group of the population because of its nationality, race, religion or because of its ethnic, social or political affiliation;
2. Serious crimes under the Geneva Conventions of 12 August 1949 and other international agreements relating to the protection of victims of war to which Switzerland is a party, if the offence under examination is particularly serious because of the conditions under which it was committed;
3. Crimes committed with the aim of exercising duress or extortion and which put in danger or threaten to put in danger the life and physical integrity of persons, in particular by use of means of massive destruction, triggering a catastrophe or taking hostages. 
Switzerland, Penal Code, 1937, as amended in 2009, Article 101(1).
Switzerland’s Penal Code (1937), taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, states under the title “Limitation”:
Article 101
1 Not subject to limitation are:
a. genocide (Art. 264);
b. crimes against humanity (Art. 264a para. 1 and 2);
c. war crimes (Art. 264c para. 1–3, 264d para. 1 and 2, 264e para. 1 and 2, 264f, 264g para. 1 and 2 and 264h);
d. crimes committed with the aim of exercising duress or extortion and which put in danger or threaten to put in danger the life and physical integrity of a large number of persons, in particular by using means of massive destruction, by triggering a catastrophe or by taking hostages. 
Switzerland, Penal Code, 1937, taking into account amendments entered into force up to 2011, Article 101(1).
[footnotes in original omitted]
In the Spring case in 2001 dealing with the claim of an Auschwitz survivor against the Swiss Confederation for compensation for having been handed over, in November 1943, to German troops by Swiss border guards, Switzerland’s Federal Court, in the part of the judgment concerning the question whether the right to compensation was barred by statutes of limitation, referred to Article 75(1) bis of the Swiss Penal Code and Article 56 bis of the Swiss Military Criminal Code as amended and stated that these provisions excluded the applicability of statutes of limitation to, inter alia, genocide and grave breaches of the 1949 Geneva Conventions or other international agreements on the protection of victims of war if the offence was particularly serious given the circumstances. However, the Federal Court pointed out that Article 75 bis of the Swiss Penal Code had been adopted under the premise that the provision be applicable “only if the prosecution of the crime or the punishment was not yet barred by statutes of limitation under the then applicable law at the time of the coming into force of this change” and that this would not be valid only for the cases of extradition and other forms of international cooperation in criminal matters. As to the alleged punishable act – the claimant referring, inter alia, to complicity in genocide – the Court stated that, if the handing over of the claimant to the German authorities should in fact be relevant under penal law, the relevant acts would, at the time of the coming into force of Article 75 bis of the Swiss Penal Code in 1983, have been barred by absolute statutes of limitation, which would be the reason why the applicant could not deduce a right in his favour from the principle that statutes of limitation under penal law can also be applicable to the right under civil law. 
Switzerland, Federal Court, Spring case, Judgment, 21 January 2001.