Micronationalism in Antarctica
Antarctica is the only continent on Earth that has areas that are not claimed by any macronational government. Only territorial claims divide the continent, although some of these claims are only recognized by their respective countries. Because of this, Antarctica has been a hot spot for micronationalism.
In 1959, Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Chile, France, Japan, New Zealand, Norway, South Africa, the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom, and the United States signed the Antarctic Treaty. It was agreed among members of the Antarctic Treaty that no nation shall lay claim to West Antarctica, a region bordered by the Chilean claim, New Zealand’s claim and the Ross Ice Shelf. A number of micronations, over many years, have thought that a loophole exists in the Treaty: that individual claimants were not bound to this treaty. As a result, several micronations claim territory in West Antarctica.
The 'loophole' theory is thought to have originated from the establishment of Westarctica in 2001. Its founder, Travis McHenry, stated that the treaty only applied to countries. Hence, he claimed the land as an individual, something copied by most micronations claiming land in Antarctica today.
However, this premise does appear to be explicitly refuted by Article IV, Clause 2 of the Antarctic Treaty:
No acts or activities taking place while the present Treaty is in force shall constitute a basis for asserting, supporting or denying a claim to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica or create any rights of sovereignty in Antarctica. No new claim, or enlargement of an existing claim, to territorial sovereignty in Antarctica shall be asserted while the present Treaty is in force.
The clause does not make any distinction between individuals and countries, stating only that no new claims or expansion of claims at all are permitted under the Treaty. It also makes clear that nothing in the treaty should be interpreted as legitimising any claims to territory in Antarctica. However, the stipulation of both the United Stated of America and Russia (originally made as the USSR) that they reserve the right to assert a claim in the future brings further confusion to the matter.
List of micronations
These here are the current active micronations located in Antarctica.
- Grand Duchy of Westarctica (2 November 2001)
- Confederation of the Antarctica's Elain of Atilnia (21 December 2006)
- Grand Duchy of Flandrensis (22 November 2008)
- Empire of Antarctica (19 July 2010)
- Decracy of Vilthia ( Protectorate of Vega claimed since 2012)
- Republic of Aksana (25 August 2022)
- Federal Republic of Lostisland (19 April 2013)
- Federal Commonwealth of Nixland (20 June 2014)
- Kingdom of Eintrachtia ( Eintrachtian (Penguinsian) Antarctic Territories since 30 May 2017)
- Republic of Jailavera (3 December 2019, with the Jailaverian Antarctic and Austral Territory)
- United Republics of Antarctica (25 December 2019 with initial land claims)
- Federal Republic of New Potato Land (10 March 2020 with the Adélie Land Treaty of Cession)
- Grand Navārdian Commonwealth (Arcelia since 16 April 2020)
- Second Coastal Empire (Northarctica since 29 April 2020)
- Principality of New Lubenia ( Ross Icebergs City since 1 August 2020)
- Kingdom of Arlandica ( Arlandican Antarctic Territory since 14 December 2020)
- Great Empire of Tuchlinasia (16 March 2021)
- Principality of Rossland (11 May 2022)
- Principality of Polarveinn (11 July 2022)
- Kingdom of Latveria (27 July 2022)
- Federated Republic of Antarctica (18 February 2022)
- Commonwealth of the Psi Islands (9 April 2023)
- Federation of Communist Antarctica (11 May 2023)
Several micronations have existed in Antarctica, but have since been abandoned or reformed.
- Empire of Agber ( Marie Byrd Protectorate claimed from 23 December 1998 to 7 May 2020) (renounced claim in favor of Westarctican claim)
- Holy Salanian Empire (Salanian Antarctic Territory [Drygalski Island]) 1 November 2008
- Kingdom of Finismund (9 November 2008 - 2 December 2009)
- Federated States of Antarctica (25 January 2009)
- Keep Watch (February 8, 2009)
- Principality of Arkel (1 July 2009)
- Socialist Federal Republic of Nemkhavia (31 July 2009 - 31 January 2010) - Claimed Balleny Islands - now a part of Socialist Union of Nemkhavia and Pristinia
- Republic of Varcetia (Varcetia Islands) (5 August 2009)
- Union of Oceania (Mawson Territory) (1 November 2009 and Reclaimed 21 January 2010) now the Commonwealth of Northern Australia
- Republic of Danesland (Grant Island) (30 November 2009)
- USLSSR (Antartican Soviet Socialist Republic) (13 August 2010)
- Domanglia (31 October 2011)
- The Republic of Uniland (Unilandian Antarctic Territory 2 June 2018)
- Phoklandian Free State (Arcelia and Northarctica from February 2019 to April 2020)
- Socialist Union of Nemkhavia and Pristinia (claiming sub-antarctic Buffalo - formerly Bouvet - island; and Dresner - formerly Gough - island; claiming antarctic Balleny Islands)
- Kingdom of Istoria (Victoria Land ) now the Republic of Kuhugstan
- United Antarctica Colonies
- Federal Republic of St. Charlie
- Republic of Atlantis
- Soviet Republic of North America
- Kingdom of Lopezia
- Kingdom of Lukland (16 June 2020 witch the Drygalski Province and 2 November 2020 with the Province of Mount Tyree and Mac Robertson Land, 7 December 2020 Lukland Antarctic Territory)
- Cyrianic Federal Republic (16 April 2022 – 31 August 2022)
Antarctic Micronational Union
The Antarctic Micronational Union is the first micronational multinational organisation that comprises only of Antarctic micronations. The main goal of the AMU is to organize all Antarctic micronations and protect each other's territory and claims. The AMU also kept records about all claims in Antarctica to avoid misunderstandings and conflicts. It was formally established on 6 December 2008 by the Grand Duchy of Flandrensis, the Kingdom of Finismund and Marie State as the Grupo del Acuerdo Micronacional Antarctico (GAMA).
The AMU was founded so as to prevent illegal claims of other micronations. The former Grand Duchy of Westarctica that disappeared at the beginning of 2008, for instance, returned on 31 December 2008 and demanded that Finismund, Flandrensis and Marie State return their territories.
The administration of the GAMA was a mess so the organization needed changes. On 15 January 2010, Grand Duke Niels I of Flandrensis was elected as the first Secretary-General (later renamed to Administrative-General). The same day GAMA was renamed into the Antarctic Micronational Union (a name that has more clarity). In September 2014 Niels of Flandrensis announced his decision to resign as Administrative-General, and on 19 September 2014 he was succeeded by Yaroslav Mar, the President of Lostisland.
The organization continued in this capacity until 4 November 2016, when Flandrensis left the organisation in protest at an alleged unwillingness of its leadership to start pursuing an ecological agenda in regards to the continent. AMU Administrative-General Yaroslav Mar disputed this, publishing an e-mail in which he had offered Grand Duke Niels the chance to draft a new, more environmentally-focused charter for the organisation. Nevertheless, the departure of Flandrensis triggered an exodus of member-states, leading to the de facto collapse of the organisation by the end of the year.
The organization saw a revival in 2020, with a number of claimants and their successors making up the membership.
Transantarctic Supramicronational Alliance
The TSA was officially established on March 11, 2020 as an alliance of several micronations with claims on the Antarctic continent. The beginning of 2020 manifested itself with a need for a micronational organization which would:
- Effectively monitor the political situation in the Antarctic area, individual/national/micronational activities on the continent and global continental processes of both natural and human character.
- Have an election based rotary management (with elections held every year).
- Be easy contactable by both solicited and unsolicited individuals and organizations.
- Have a diplomatic approach towards new parties as opposed to a forward sanctionary approach.
- Provide a clear stance on new continental claims (with a brief history of Antarctic micronationalism) to upcoming Antarctic micronations or micronations with intent of claiming any Antarctic territory.
- Add geopolitical balance to current Antarctic micronationalism making it multilateral.
TSA constitutes a system of collective defense whereby its independent member states agree to mutual defense in response to an attack by any external party.
Union of Micronational Land Claims
Following the collapse of the AMU in late 2016, Antarctic micronations lacked a continental governing body. This period lasted until early 2019 when (becoming aware of the AMU's lack of activity), micronationalist Charles Ross created what he wishes to be considered the direct follow up to the AMU. This organization became known as the Union of Micronational Land Claims.
Although the organization has a small number of members - none of which are major, traditional claimants to Antarctica such as Flandrensis or Westarctica - the UMLC aims to serve a similar job to that of the AMU and was the only contemporary organisation which attempts to govern Antarctica's micronational world until the AMU's revival in 2020.
Commonwealth of South Pacifis
The Commonwealth of South Pacifis is a free union of sovereign and independent micronations, an intergovernmental organization of heads of state and government that has the characteristics of a supranational decentralized confederation. The Commonwealth was established 1 January 2021 and unites micronations whose territorial claims are wholly or partly located in Oceania and / or Antarctica, which mutually recognize the sovereignty, territorial claims and legitimacy of the authorities of other members and by mutual consent may resolve certain issues of domestic policy and state sovereignty at the international level within the Commonwealth. Member states have equal status and are independent of each other in any aspect of their domestic or foreign policy.
Union of Antarctic Micronations
After a conference between the Eintrachtia and Cyrance in early 2022 have raised the idea of a new supranational organization in Antarctica due to the awareness of the constant inactivity of the AMU since 2016, the UAM was suggested after a round of discussions between July and August in the same year. The UAM was said to be willing to become a new union in the Antarctic continent and takes on the legacy of micronationalism in Antarctica.
The Treaty of Setubal was signed finally on 9 August 2022 and has set a standard for the future of the UAM. The UAM aims to mainly provide a economic development opportunity zone and a diplomatic friendship zone that is similar to the EU in the Antarctic continent for micronations that decides to join together and safeguard the continuous peace on the continent.
Seeing the complicated application process and certain difficulties in arranging all Antarctic micronations to send their delegates into a single meeting, the UAM was set to improve the former flaws of the AMU. Using contemporary media, the UAM uses Discord to simplify both the application process and the difficulties in arranging conferences and meetings. Despite some arguments in saying that using online media in managing intergovernmental organizations is an act of unprofessionalism, the UAM believes that the future is the internet and supports the development of humanity through both physically and digitally.
In October 2022, the union was announced to be dissolved due to constant inactivity being a relatively small organization with no significant progress or influence spread among the Antarctic micronational community. Being an organization of fewer than 3 member states while tackling the political situation in Cyrance, the union saw no use but to put on hold. After one last meeting in October 2022, the UAM dissolved after only 2 months since establishment.
in late 2022, Empire of Antarctica formed the Antarctic Alliance along with :
Country of Antarctica
Ground Zero: Ice Point