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Constitution adopted for New South Scotland

Governing Commissioner Hugh McFarlane

The Crown Dependency of New South Scotland marked a new era in its history today, following the promulgation of a separate territorial constitution by Emperor Jonathan I.

According to the Crown Dependency’s Governing Commissioner, The Rt Hon. Sir Hugh McFarlane KCA, the creation of a sophisticated system of local governance represents a fundamental shift in the Australasian territory towards a more active form of territorial community.

New South Scotland’s history dates back to late 2012 when it was first established as a colony of the now-defunct United Kingdom of New Wessex. The territory remained under Wessaxon administration for several months until it was ceded to Austenasia as the Empire’s first Crown Dependency, following the abdication of the Wessaxon Declan I and the ascension of Jonathan I to the imperial throne.

Responsibility for the budding territory was placed in the hands of its first Governing Commissioner, the now Charlotte Lindstrom, who also served as monarch of the nearby Kingdom of Zealandia. 

Over the following four years, political turbulence within Zealandia saw the Kingdom repeatedly interfere in the Crown Dependency’s affairs, with members of the Zealandian militarily having allegedly sought to annex the territory and Governing Commissioner Lindstrom herself deliberately misinforming the Austenasian Government before occupying the land with Zealandian troops.

The subsequent international condemnation of Zealandia saw Lindstrom agree to a compromise, wherein New South Scotland would function as a joint Austenasian-Zealandian condominium under Austenasian sovereignty and Zealandian administration. This arrangement only came to an end with the peaceful withdrawal of Zealandian administrators and the appointment of McFarlane to the role of Governing Commissioner in September of 2016. 

According to Governing Commissioner McFarlane, “New South Scotland has throughout its history made great contributions to activity within the micronational community, but its status as a sparsely populated territory has meant that as a political entity itself, it has ironically remained extremely inactive”.

Governing Commissioner McFarlane hopes that with the promulgation of a territorial constitution, the status quo may begin to change.

“The beauty of New South Scotland is that there is no expectation for it to emerge as one of the beating hearts of the micronational community. It has survived for years as a territorial entity on the fringes of the Empire with limited internal activity, meaning that unlike a national entity, it won’t disappear if it falls into inactivity.”

“My intention as Governing Commissioner is to take this unique territory, with its long history and modest expectations, and to forge a special community within the broader micronational space. Citizens who participate in other micronations do not have to make New South Scotland their number one priority. They can come as they please and contribute what they’d like. People can invest as much or as little as they want into this effort, and together we can enjoy the resulting community.” 

Under the new constitution, the Crown Dependency will possess its own Legislative Assembly, judicial system and electoral process. According to Governing Commissioner McFarlane, this is designed to allow for maximum political participation, which it is hoped will then spawn other aspects of community, including frequent conversation, organised debates, contests, gaming sessions and cultural projects. 

“It’s best to think of the constitution like the roots of a tree. From these roots will hopefully sprout an active political system and a community that is engaged on more than just a political level.”

Non-residential citizenship of the Crown Dependency – which does not grant Austenasian subjectship – is open to people of any nationality. Those interested in applying may do so via this site. Interested individuals may also explore the territory’s new website and its Discord server.

Wilcsland to be dissolved at New Year

The Austenasian Parliament earlier today passed an Act withdrawing recognition from the Kingdom of Wilcsland and announcing its dissolution effective as of midnight on 31 December.

The flag of Wilcsland, with Declan I (left) and Ptolemy II (right).

Wilcsland was ruled by King Declan I from its foundation as South Bank in 2002 until 2014. Declan I also reigned as Austenasia’s third Emperor from December 2010 until January 2013.

Declan’s abdication from Austenasia set in motion a chain of events which resulted in his abandoning of Wilcsland, and he was overthrown and replaced as King there by his brother, Ptolemy II, in December 2014.

However, in the past five years Ptolemy II has done nothing as King of Wilcsland other than appoint Lord Admiral Kennedy – the current Austenasian Prime Minister – as co-King in 2015.

With Wilcsland having fallen into complete inactivity and no leader willing to take up the reins, Lord Admiral Kennedy as King decreed the dissolution of the country and the abdication of both himself and his co-King by assenting to the Act of Parliament passed earlier today.

The Act mandates that all rights to hold or bestow the throne of Wilcsland shall now be held by the Austenasian Throne, which already held suzerain status over the country due to Ptolemy II having declared Wilcsland a protected state of Austenasia on the first day of his reign.

During the rule of Declan I over Austenasia, he was often considered to have seen the Empire as simply one – albeit the grandest – of his several foreign possessions, and sometimes implied it to be a colonial holding of Wilcsland. The dissolution of Wilcsland by an Austenasian law demonstrates how far the geopolitical situation has changed in the years since his reign.

Austenasia breaks population record

A graph tracking the growth of Austenasia’s population since its foundation.

Earlier today Austenasia’s population reached its highest number in history, with the registration of six new residents in New Richmond pushing the number of Austenasians up to 89.

New Richmond is already the most populous inhabited claim of the Empire, with twenty residents now living in its five different boroughs.

The previous population record had been 88, between March and June 2016, reached after a period of almost uninterrupted growth since Austenasia’s foundation (with the sole exception of former emperor Declan I losing Austenasian nationality in August 2013).

The population began to decline with a net loss of one person upon the simultaneous cession of Harenfall and annexation of Ionathanopolis on 27 June 2016. This culminated in a low point of 74 after Zephyria, Thanasia, and Porthbokon were dissolved in August the following year.

However, the number of Austenasians has since begun to steadily climb, and out of Austenasia’s population of 89, at least 53 will be eligible to vote in the upcoming general election.

Austenasia itself is home to 71 people, with 18 Austenasian nationals living abroad; the largest populations of expatriate Austenasians are in the United Kingdom (8 people) and the United States of America (4 people).

Anti-bribery law passed

It is now a criminal offence to receive a bribe as well as to give one.

It is now a criminal offence to receive a bribe as well as to give one.

His Imperial Majesty Emperor Jonathan I this morning gave Imperial Consent to the Bribery Act 2017, which “makes new provision for the definition and prohibition of bribery”.

The Act of Parliament, which can be read here, gained the required five out of nine votes yesterday afternoon, and was passed by the Speaker on to the Monarch earlier this morning.

Prior to the passing of this Act, the crime of bribery was illegal only under a short subsection of a six year old Imperial Decree of the Emperor’s predecessor, Declan I.

The Bribery Act 2017 sets out a far more detailed definition of the crime, and also makes it a criminal offence to accept or request a bribe; it had previously been illegal only to offer or give one.

The Act was authored by the Emperor himself, who has an A-level qualification in Law. Its passage sees a return to the writing of detailed, comprehensive criminal law by Jonathan I, with the Emperor having authored several lengthy Acts of this type since his ascension to the Throne in 2013.

Fortunately, this new Act may never be needed; in Austenasia’s eight and a half year history, nobody has ever been charged with committing bribery.

Emperor to spend six weeks in exile

26 January 2016 5 comments

The trial of Emperor Jonathan I has come to an end, with the Monarch having been found guilty of three counts of treason against former emperor Esmond III.

The Emperor has agreed to spend six weeks outside Austenasia to atone for helping to overthrow Esmond III.

The trial, which took place online in the Imperial Court, saw the Emperor being tried for three actions he committed during December 2010 and January 2011 while Crown Prince in the process of overthrowing Esmond III in favour of Declan I.

The Emperor convened the trial after reflection on the circumstances under which his predecessor came to power, stating that he wished to see justice done.

As Monarch, the Emperor is immune from prosecution by anyone other than himself, and so technically served as judge, prosecutor, and defendant in the trial. However, for simplicity’s sake, the prosecution was argued by Sir Sebastian Linden and the defence by King Adam I of Überstadt.

The trial came to an end on 19 January, with the jury finding the Emperor guilty of all charges. He did not appeal the outcome, and was sentenced this morning by the consuls to six weeks of exile, during which he will not set foot in Austenasia.

Due to the status of the Monarch, he is not legally obliged to submit to said sentence. However, the Emperor has stated that he will voluntarily do so, spending most of the time at the Austenasian Embassy to the United Kingdom (located in Roehampton).

The exile will not in any way affect the smooth running of Austenasian government: the Emperor has not been deprived of any of his powers, and will simply exercise them online or via telephone.

Emperor puts himself on trial

13 January 2016 1 comment

The first criminal trial since May 2009 has begun in Austenasia, with the Emperor himself on trial.

HIM Emperor Jonathan I has, in an unprecedented move, charged himself with three counts of treason against Esmond III for actions committed over December 2010 and January 2011 in regards to his role in bringing Declan I to power.

In the Emperor’s recent Christmas broadcast, he announced a desire to see the legality of his role in those events investigated in order to rectify any outstanding injustices.

A select committee of the Privy Council was gathered, which helped organise a trial.

The events in question took place during and after the War of the Orlian Reunification in December 2010, when the then Crown Prince Jonathan successfully orchestrated a conflict between the Carshalton Nations to bring Declan I to power as joint Monarch in opposition to Esmond III. Although the then Crown Prince admitted his role in events the following year, no legal action was ever taken against him.

With the trial taking place in the Imperial Court, the Emperor is by a technicality judge, defendant, and prosecutor. However, in the interests of simplicity and justice, the prosecution is being argued by Sir Sebastian Linden and the defence by King Adam I of Überstadt.

The trial is taking place over Skype due to differences in time zones between the prosecution and defence. As such, it will likely take several days. The smooth running of the government is not likely to be affected during this time.

More details about the trial will be made public as events unfold.

Emperor adopts Imperial Cipher

The newly adopted personal Imperial Cipher of Emperor Jonathan I.

His Imperial Majesty Emperor Jonathan I has adopted an Imperial Cipher for use as a personal emblem or seal where the Imperial Standard is inappropriate.

The cipher consists of a double-headed eagle, holding a sword and a globus cruciger, and bearing the letters “J I I” – “Jonathan I Imperator”.

When used in heraldry or as a flag, the cipher will have a background of imperial purple. It is planned for the cipher to mainly be used as a seal to authenticate papers.

The cipher is based on that of the late medieval Roman emperors of the Palaialogos dynasty.

Jonathan I is not the first Austenasian emperor to adopt an imperial cipher; Declan I did so in June 2012, and Esmond III used one in an unofficial capacity from August 2010 onwards.

Jonathan I becomes Austenasia’s longest reigning Emperor

Austenasia’s four Monarchs. Clockwise from top left: Terry I, Esmond III, Jonathan I and Declan I

At 18:38 GMT this evening, HIM Emperor Jonathan I broke the record of his predecessor to become the Empire’s longest reigning Monarch.

Jonathan I ascended to the Throne on 20 January 2013 after the abdication of Declan I. The precise record to beat was 763 days, 1 hour, 11 minutes and 30 seconds.

Each of Austenasia’s four Monarchs (except, of course, founding Emperor Terry I) have had a longer reign than their predecessor:

  • Jonathan I: 20 January 2013 – present; 763 days and counting.
  • Declan I: 19 December 2010 – 20 January 2013; 763 days
  • Esmond III: 16 February 2010 – 20 September 2011; 580 days
  • Terry I: 20 September 2008 – 16 February 2010; 414 days

Ptolemy II takes the throne of Wilcsland

HM King Ptolemy II, formerly known as Prince Ciaran, the new King of Wilcsland.

Prince Ciaran, younger brother of Declan I, this morning announced his takeover of the throne of Wilcsland as King Ptolemy II.

The previous King of Wilcsland, Declan I – who also ruled as Emperor of Austenasia between 2010 and 2013, and was known in Wilcsland as King Ptolemy I Helios – has lived in London for some months now, having cut off communication with his family and homeland in Wiltshire.

Declan I had proclaimed the union of New Wessex between Wilcsland and Orly while still Emperor, but this had collapsed after Orly was liberated from his rule in June last year. He had since effectively abandoned the governance of his own kingdom, to the extent that Austenasia revoked recognition of New Wessex earlier this year.

Now, however, Wilcsland has returned. King Ptolemy II has confirmed the dissolution of New Wessex and arranged with Emperor Jonathan I for Wilcsland to become a protected state of the Empire.

This marks the end of the reign of Declan I over his native country, where he has reigned since 1999 (albeit with a one-week long interruption in 2006).

One year anniversary of the Liberation of Orly celebrated

East Wrythe, the location of today’s celebration.

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.