This is the first instalment of a new monthly feature for the Austenasian Times: MicroWorld Newsbites, in which a look will be taken at news stories from around the world of small nations, which are unlikely to be covered by major news networks.
- The fence around the Playing Field – part of which formed Copan’s international boundary with the United Kingdom and with the Grove – has been removed by Sutton Parks Service.
- The Flandrensisian Commonwealth, a diplomatic partnership between Flandrensis, Arkel and Campinia, was dissolved earlier today. The three members of the Commonwealth – which was founded in October 2010 – all claim territory in Antarctica but have populations based in Belgium and the Netherlands. Due to its members sharing a diplomatic policy, a treaty signed in January 2013 by the Empire to formalise its by then four year old friendship with Flandrensis resulted in diplomatic relations being formed with Arkel and Campinia as well. The three nations remain on good terms, but according to Grand Duke Niels of Flandrensis, a renewed focus on environmental matters and a more global diplomatic outlook made the Commonwealth redundant.
- George De Feyter, Minister of Antarctic Environment, has announced “an ambitious programme which aims at alerting all the countries in the world about the dangers of pollution and damaging Antarctica”. A letter will be sent each week to another government, starting with the top ten most polluting countries in the world.
- On 5 April, Molossia welcomed its second native-born citizen, raising its population to 31.
- On 16 April, Molossia celebrated Obscura Day, a worldwide celebration of unique places. A group of sixteen visitors was given a tour of the nation by the President, First Lady, and Chief Constable.
- A change of government structure in Vikesland is being discussed, with more power planned to be transferred to King Christopher to enable more efficient governance.
- Between 11 and 13 April, the former Queen Astrid of Zealandia (also known as Anna Lindstrom) launched a self-coup against her own government, replacing the monarchy with a communist state council of which she is now chairwoman as Charlotte Lindstrom. Known for its instability, Zealandia’s latest revolution has been criticised by other governments. Diplomatic negotiations to update the treaty between Austenasia and Zealandia concerning New South Scotland – of which the monarch of Zealandia was made ex officio governing commissioner – are currently underway.
His Imperial Majesty the Emperor yesterday gave Lady Evren Filgert and Sir James von Puchow a guided tour of the Carshalton Nations.
Emperor Jonathan I met Filgert – currently Acting Representative of the newly annexed Town of Porthbokon – at Mile End in London, where they were then joined by von Puchow of Landashir, who became a non-residential subject of Austenasia last month.
The three travelled by train to Carshalton station, and walked the short distance to Orly, where they were given a tour by the Emperor of its constituent states Copan and the Grove and their respective capitals of Memphis and the Secluded Place. The Emperor spoke at length about the history of Orly, mentioning the recent floods, its liberation from foreign rule, and the strange discovery of a turkey carcass in the Grove one and a half years ago.
After the tour of Orly, the three of them went to Carshalton High Street and had lunch at a café there. The tour then continued, with Filgert and von Puchow being shown the former site of Rushymia and the Midget Empire from the vantage point of the neighbouring recreation ground.
The final point of the tour was the capital itself, Wrythe. The two guests briefly met Crown Princess Caroline and pet bullmastiff Edd, and were then shown Wrythe Pet Cemetery and the ruins of the Orange Pyramid in Wrythe Public Park.
The tour of the Carshalton Nations over, the three went back into London. After von Puchow left for Landashir, the Emperor explored Mile End with Lady Evren until it was time for them to depart.
The first anniversary of the Liberation of Orly was today marked with a celebration in the Copanese Embassy at East Wrythe.
Tea and cakes were enjoyed by Emperor Jonathan I and Queen Emma of Copan, who was appointed monarch upon the Liberation one year ago.
They were joined by two prominent Orlians at the embassy, which, while under Austenasian sovereignty as an exclave of the capital, is administered under Copanese law due being under extraterritoriality. As East Wrythe is therefore in a sense both Austenasian and Orlian, it was felt to be the best location to celebrate the occasion.
The Liberation of Orly is the name given to the events of 24 June 2013, when citizens of Orly deposed Declan I and turned to the Emperor of Austenasia to restore legitimate government in Copan and the Grove, the two states which comprise Orly. Declan I had seized power over the Carshalton Nations in December 2010 by exploiting a power struggle between the then Emperor Esmond III and Crown Prince Jonathan, but had abdicated from the Austenasian Throne in January 2013. His deposition from the throne of Orly (and its re-division into Copan and the Grove) marked the end of foreign rule in the Carshalton Nations.
Jonathan I yesterday visited the Grove in a personal capacity to feed the wildlife there, an activity joyfully partaken in by the newly independent Orlians a year ago immediately after having deposed Declan I. The Emperor hinted that this may become an annual tradition.
Warm weather has resulted in the water which had been flowing into the Copanese capital drying up.
The flood began on 8 January earlier this year after heavy rain throughout the winter made an old source of the River Wandle flow for the first time in 15 years. A usually dry riverbed, the Westcroft Canal, filled with water which flowed into the capital of Copan, the Secluded Place, and through it out onto the Plain of Copan (a large field which comprises the majority of the kingdom) to cause flooding.
Recent warm weather had caused the water on the Plain of Copan to recede considerably, but until recently water was still flowing into the Secluded Place. This was still the case – albeit at a greatly diminished rate – on Tuesday 13th May, but it was today reported that the water level in Westcroft Canal had fallen to the extent that water was no longer flowing into the Secluded Place.
The water which had been flooding the Secluded Place and flowing out from it onto the Plain of Copan has now mostly drained away, with some large puddles remaining.
For the first time since the start of the year, the Secluded Place is can now be accessed due to no longer being underwater. However, Smoker’s Wall, a large set of brick and cement steps which are the main entrance to the capital, has been badly damaged by the water, with a breach in the wall and a large crack in the steps.
Bits of masonry from Smoker’s Wall and other pieces of assorted debris brought there by the flow of the water now litter the ground of the Secluded Place, but the news has been happily welcomed by Copanese citizens that the flood is finally over.
Recent warm weather has resulted in the flood waters partially receding from Copan.
The Orlian kingdom has been affected by floods since the start of the year when an old source of the River Wandle started flowing again after heavy rain, putting much of the country underwater as an old riverbed refilled with water and brought it into Copan.
Sunny weather over late March and the past month has seen the flood waters receding from the Plain of Copan – the large field which makes up the majority of the kingdom – which for several weeks saw those parts of it which were not underwater to be so muddy as to be impassable.
Despite the Plain of Copan now being mostly free of flooding, excepting some large puddles remaining in the northern-most corner, the capital of Copan remains flooded.
The capital, known as the Secluded Place, has had water flowing down into it over (and, after a breach developed, through) its main entrance Smoker’s Wall since the start of the floods. However, the level of water in the old riverbed (Westcroft Canal) has now fallen to the degree that water is no longer flowing over Smoker’s Wall, but only through the breach in it caused by the floods in February.
Should the warm weather continue, it is likely that the water will fall so low so as to no longer be able to flow into the Secluded Place before the end of the month.
Despite four separate pieces of land joining the Empire only yesterday, Austenasia has expanded once again this evening with the annexation of East Wrythe.
This piece of land, comprised of a garden, has been annexed as an exclave of Wrythe, situated roughly a third of a mile from the main town, on a large island of the River Wandle which was named the Island of Wrythe on 10 January earlier this year.
This is the first time that the territorial composition of Wrythe has changed since March 2011, when a small piece of land bordering Wrythe granted to the Slinky Empyre was re-annexed after the latter polity collapsed.
East Wrythe is adjacent to the house of Queen Emma I of Copan, and has been granted extraterritoriality as an embassy of Copan. Although under Austenasian sovereignty, Copanese law will apply for as long as East Wrythe remains an embassy. This is the first embassy (not counting the symbolic Crepundia) to be founded in the Empire.
Emma I was crowned Queen of Copan this afternoon by Emperor Jonathan I.
The Emperor, who appointed Emma I to the Copanese throne in June last year after Copan became independent from Wessaxon rule (along with the neighbouring state of the Grove), placed a silver crown on the Queen’s head with the words “As Emperor of Austenasia and Romanorum Imperator Occidentalis, I crown you Emma I, Queen of Copan.”
The coronation was held at Beddington Park in the United Kingdom. The capital of Copan is still flooded, and so an alternative place for the ceremony had to be found.
This is the first time that the Emperor of Austenasia has physically crowned a vassal monarch. Unlike the coronation of Jonathan I himself, which took place only a month after his ascension to the Throne, the coronation of Emma I has taken place just over nine months into her reign.