In April 2015 the nation of Liberland poppedinto existence.
There was no violent overthrow or political negotiations.
One man and hisassociates simply hoisted a flag and proclaimed that a small patch of no-mans land betweenSerbia and Croatia was now the micronation of Liberland.
With an eager population, plansfor a constitution, financial system, and a slogan, the nation seems well on it’sway to legitimacy.
But… can you really just show up and invent a brand new nation? Well,technically yes.
So, how exactly do you do it? The qualifications for what constitutes a“nation” were clearly spelled out in the 1933 Montevideo Convention.
This agreementdefined a state as having sovereignty regardless of whether or not other countries acknowledgedit.
This is called “declarative theory” and is different from “constitutive theory”,which says that other countries have to acknowledge your legitimacy.
Now, technically, withoutinternational acceptance, your nation is pretty much only relevant within your borders.
Butif that’s good enough for you, then let’s find out what you need to do.
First off, you must have a permanent population.
Now, so far no state has been denied for having too small of a population.
So as long as you’rewilling to live permanently in your new nation, go ahead and strike that off your list.
That’swhere The Grand Duchy of Westarctica doesn’t count, because no one, including its founder,has ever permanently lived there.
Next up, you must have a defined territory.
This is where most new nations fall flat.
With very few exceptions, nearly all the visibleland in the world is already claimed.
This leaves you with a couple choices.
The firstis to build, annex, or buy your own island that’s at least 200 nautical miles fromthe nearest claimed territory.
You can also try to invade an existing plot of land, andhope that you can defend your proclaimed borders, or that nobody cares and leaves you alone.
Either way, you need to be able to define your borders and have some form of controlover them.
The micronation Republic of Minerva was invaded and reclaimed by Tonga over aterritory dispute.
Remember, if you can’t fight back, don’t try to take other government’sland.
Now, provided you’ve found or built someclearly defined area, the next thing you need is a government.
All a government really is,is a source of administrative power that makes policy decisions about a country’s goals,security, justice system, infrastructure, and economy.
So figure out what kind of politicalsystem you like: democratic, despotic, anarchist, up to you; and draft a quick constitutionlaying out your micronation vision.
That should do it.
Finally, you must have the capacity to enterinto relations with other states, so send an e-mail, fax, letter, or homing pigeon toyour nearest neighbor saying “hi!”, and you should be good to go on that front aswell.
Starting your own nation is pretty easy, providedthat you’ve got the undisputed land to do it.
Of course, that’s easier said than done.
Without undisputed land, someone, somewhere will demand you pay them taxes.
If you do,then you’re not really an independent state, like the Christiania commune of Denmark.
Ifyou don’t, then you might have some trouble running your country from the inside of ajail cell.
In any case, good luck! There are quite a few regions that have beenfighting for independence from larger nations all over the world.
To learn more about thesepossible future countries, check out our video here.
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