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Milomir I of Ongal dies aged 58

HH Grand Prince Milomir I of Ongal

News has broken that His Highness Grand Prince Milomir I, founder and sovereign of Ongal, died on Thursday 25th August.

The news was announced on Facebook by the official Ongal group and by the Prince’s godson.

On 25 November 2014, Milomir I became the founding monarch of the Danube Ecological Principality of Ongal, claiming ten uninhabited pockets of land on the western bank of the Danube which, due to an ongoing dispute between Croatia and Serbia over their precise border, were technically no longer claimed by either country.

The Principality claimed the land as a nature reserve, with the Grand Prince as its absolute monarch.

Before founding Ongal, Prince Milomir had a career as a decorated Bulgarian architect and was a well-known local dignitary. His existing connections helped Ongal to flourish, and at time of writing it claims a population of roughly 1,400 who have applied to become citizens.

Milomir charged the people of Ongal with keeping “a high honor, aristocratic spirit and patriotism and to be [a] model of nobility and dignity”. He was often pictured attending various ceremonies of a civic or religious nature, and was well-known for his promotion of Bulgarian culture and history.

Prince Milomir was an Orthodox Christian, and Ongal is an officially Orthodox state. Milomir I and Emperor Jonathan I made contact in June 2016, bonding over their shared faith, and a treaty of mutual recognition was signed between Austenasia and Ongal on 1 July 2016.

Soon after mutual recognition was established between Austenasia and Ongal, the two monarchs gave each other noble titles: Prince Milomir was made Baron of Arenberg by Jonathan I, and the Prince gave the Emperor the title Baron of Ongal. Furthermore, Milomir I was knighted into the Glorious Order of St. John by His Imperial Majesty in the 2016 Independence Day honours list, and Emperor Jonathan I was given an honorary degree from an academy set up for citizens of Ongal.

However, primarily due to the inability of either monarch to speak the other’s language without the aid of translation, communication between Austenasia and Ongal was never as frequent as it may otherwise would have been.

What the future holds for Ongal after this sad loss remains to be seen. Although its founding father has been lost, a nation of such great size will undoubtedly continue in some form.

Treaties signed at London meeting

Jonathan I and Lord Friedrich pose with the treaties

Yesterday saw Emperor Jonathan I sign treaties of mutual recognition with Mercia and with Mekniy-Lurk at an informal summit in central London.

His Imperial Majesty the Emperor met with Austenasian senator Lord Karl Friedrich, who had travelled to the UK from the Czech Republic.

Lord Friedrich serves as Governor of Aurora, and has previously held various Cabinet positions. He jointly owns MicroWiki along with Jonathan I.

However, in addition to his role in Austenasia, Lord Friedrich also serves as joint head of state of two other countries – Mercia and Mekniy-Lurk – both of which have diarchal governments.

Austenasia has held friendly informal relations with Mercia for almost a decade, and extended formal recognition in 2016, but the two countries had never formally signed a treaty. Although the government of the nation has been inactive for some time, Mercia has never been formally dissolved and remains a source of national identity for its citizens.

A state visit from Lord Friedrich to Austenasia in his role as Lord Temporal of Mercia to sign a treaty of mutual recognition had been planned for August 2020, but was cancelled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

By the time this visit came about, Lord Friedrich had also become co-ruler of Mekniy-Lurk, a highly-developed small nation which declared independence from the Czech Republic in 2009.

The treaties were signed in the grounds of St. Paul’s Cathedral in central London. Also there to greet Lord Friedrich to the United Kingdom were James Frisch and Newton von Uberquie, who formerly held office in Mercia as Speaker of Parliament and as First Minister respectively.

The four dignitaries met at Monument station, and visited several nearby landmarks including the eponymous Monument to the Great Fire, the Tower of London, the aforementioned St. Paul’s Cathedral, and London Stone.

After eating lunch together, the dignitaries parted ways, with the Emperor accompanying Lord Friedrich to the correct train station for him to continue his travels, via more sightseeing at Westminster and Whitehall.

During the course of the meeting, Lord Friedrich made a donation of several coins and banknotes to the Imperial Numismatic Museum. Notable among these are a Roman denarius of Septimius Severus minted in AD 194-195, and a rare commemorative coin minted by Mekniy-Lurk.

State visit to Dracul

Saturday 2nd July saw the Prime Minister, Lord William Wilson, represent the Empire of Austenasia on a state visit to Dracul.

Lord Wilson signs the treaty with President Luke

The visit was used as an opportunity to sign a treaty of mutual recognition and friendship between the two nations.

Lord Wilson met with President Stephen Luke of Dracul at the Draculian Embassy to the United States, before the two national leaders travelled to the border of Dracul itself. After entering the country, the visit officially began, with the national anthems of both countries being played.

The Prime Minister then entered the Draculian capital, Bran District, where he and President Luke signed the treaty between Austenasia and Dracul.

After the treaty was signed, an online call was had to His Imperial Majesty the Emperor, who thanked President Luke for his hospitality to Lord Wilson and expressed his wishes for a close and long-lasting friendship between their two nations.

A tour of the nation was then given to the Prime Minister. Lord Wilson observed and made polite remarks about the landmarks of Dracul, and discussion was had on the native flora and fauna of the respective states. The visit ended after the pair returned to the Embassy, whereupon the Prime Minister was given refreshment and gifts of hospitality.

This is the seventh official state visit in which Austenasia has taken part, and the first in almost ten years in which Austenasia was not the hosting state.

The Commonwealth of Dracul is bordered by Texas, and is known in the diplomatic community for its professional demeanour and high-quality media. Dracul was formally recognised by the Empire in March, after several months of informal friendship with Austenasia.

Although technically incorrect in international terminology, it has since 2010 been the custom in Austenasia for an official diplomatic visit made or hosted by the Prime Minister – not just by the Monarch – to also be called a “state visit”, so long as the head of state of the other country is being visited or hosted.

Foreign Office to consider diplomacy requests for two week window

For two weeks in July, the Austenasian Foreign Office will consider requests for diplomatic relations in a temporary lifting of the long-standing policy not to do so.

Austenasia has always insisted on granting diplomatic recognition and maintaining relations only with polities of a certain “standard”, such as those with an official claim to independence, reasonably professional behaviour, and a well-established presence and stable government.

From the start of the previous decade, the Austenasian government had received a growing number of requests to recognise or even ally with various micronations which were very much below the standards of nations the Empire would be interested in forging official ties with.

Many of these applicants were very young – sometimes mere days old – and ended up dissolving a short time afterwards, meaning diplomatic relations would have been a waste of time.

Having to politely decline each of these requests – as proved the case for most of them – proved a growing drain on the resources of the Foreign Office.

It was therefore the case that on 24 March 2014 the then Prime Minister and Chief Ambassador, HIH Countess Eritoshi, announced that Austenasia would henceforth “refrain from considering non-solicited diplomatic relations… and instead focus… on consolidating and strengthening those relations already held.”

This did not prevent the Austenasian government from reaching out on its own initiative to request formal ties with nations in which it was interested, but did provide a means to issue all those in which it was uninterested with a standardly worded “no thank you”.

However, earlier today, the Foreign Office has announced that “beginning 3 July and until 17 July, we are temporarily lifting this policy to allow any interested nations to contact us with a request for foreign relations which will be considered.”

Permitting requests to be considered will allow potential new friends who may otherwise be overlooked to be considered for formal relations, whereas making it a temporary window will ensure that the number of requests received is relatively manageable.

The idea was first proposed by the Prime Minister, Lord Wilson, in the weekly online meeting of Cabinet.

A link to an online form enabling authorised representatives of their states or nations to apply for diplomatic relations will be published on July 3rd.

UPDATE – The form can be accessed here: https://forms.gle/gAsrpqR4EKUfBro58

Fraternitas gifted to New Virginia as stability returns

4 November 2021 1 comment
The Territory of Fraternitas

Monday 1st November saw the Austenasian Territory of Fraternitas ceded to the Commonwealth of New Virginia.

Following the chaotic events in New Virginia earlier this year (link to the Adammic Express), leaders of the failed 29th of July Movement coup led their own territories in secession from New Virginia. This left the Commonwealth without any land from the original Duchy of New Virginia which amicably seceded from Austenasia in February last year.

Upon last year’s said secession, Fraternitas – an uninhabited area of one of the Towns which formed the newly independent Commonwealth – was retained by Austenasia at the suggestion of the now Lady Admiral Kennedy, as a sign of the common heritage and enduring friendship between Austenasia and New Virginia.

However, earlier this year, far from functioning as a sign of friendship, Fraternitas was used to stoke tensions between the two nations. Sophia Albina, a New Virginian politician who also held Austenasian nationality, attempted in various falsehood-laden statements to persuade the New Virginian government to unilaterally claim Fraternitas from the Empire and declare Austenasia an “enemy” and “threat”. This led to her being convicted of treason and stripped of Austenasian nationality.

Although the New Virginian government distanced itself from Albina’s words and actions, discomfort with her suggestion that Austenasian possession of Fraternitas was in some way a colonial occupation led to the Austenasian government seeking to arrange diplomatic talks with New Virginia to discuss the future of the territory.

Before such talks could be held, however, the 29th of July Movement announced their seizure of power. This led to a low-point in Austenasian-New Virginian relations, with the alliance between the two nations being formally ended.

With the coup having failed, New Virginia has slowly but surely been rebuilt. Adam I of Adammia became Acting President, and oversaw a return to political stability and the organisation of a new presidential election. This saw Sir Sertor Valentinus elected as New Virginia’s new President, inaugurated on 19 October in an online ceremony attended by both Jonathan I and new Prime Minister Lord William Wilson.

However, with the departure of so many of the revolutionaries, New Virginia was described by many as having been left a “rump state”. The acquisition of Fraternitas by New Virginia would once more give it land that was part of the former Austenasian Duchy of the same name.

With the consent of Lady Admiral Kennedy, the Emperor passed an Imperial Decree in October ceding Fraternitas to New Virginia effective as of 1 November. Eager for a return to friendly relations with the Commonwealth, the decree was quickly approved by the House of Representatives.

The Emperor’s Imperial Decree stated the following:

“We can think of no better way for Fraternitas to fulfil the meaning of its name than by serving as a gift made in good faith by the Empire to provide the Commonwealth of New Virginia with a physical connection to the original Austenasian Duchy of the same name. Our Imperial Majesty reiterates and reaffirms our will for peace and friendship with New Virginia, and our confidence in the legitimate elected government of the same moving forward from the events of the past several months.”

Although the Empire and Commonwealth have their differences, it is hoped that this donation of territory will not only remove a prospective source of conflict and undermine Albina’s claims of Austenasian hostility, but cement a friendly and co-operative relationship between the two states moving forward into the future.

Relations established with Lundenwic at London meeting

The two Emperors with Lord Lewis (centre) in Kensington

A treaty was signed yesterday establishing mutual recognition and formal relations between Austenasia and Lundenwic at a multilateral meeting in central London.

Emperor Jonathan I met Lord Mike Lewis, Prime Minister of Lundenwic, as well as Emperor Adam I of Adammia.

Adam I is also currently serving as Acting President of New Virginia after last month’s failed coup in said nation.

The three national leaders met at Speaker’s Corner in Hyde Park, gradually making their way to Kensington over the course of the afternoon.

Lundenwic was founded in December 2013, and has a population of fifteen. Its land claims are bordered by south-west London.

Despite only entering into formal diplomatic relations yesterday, Austenasia has held informal friendly relations with Lundenwic for some time. Lord Lewis visited Wrythe as a tourist in December 2016, took part in Austenasia’s tenth anniversary celebrations along with Grand Duke Julian of Lundenwic in September 2018, and joined both emperors at the June 2019 GUM Birmingham Summit.

Over the course of yesterday’s meeting, Austenasia, Adammia and Lundenwic all agreed in principle to the creation of an organisation to promote the interests of small nations and unrecognised independence movements in the British Isles. This idea was put forward by Austenasian Prime Minister Lord John Gordon in November last year, and its promotion made a priority of the Austenasian Foreign Office.

More details of the prospective organisation will be forthcoming as discussions progress.

The location of Speaker’s Corner was chosen to commemorate the tenth anniversary – off by only ten days – of the 2011 Intermicronational Summit. This summit, which likewise had Speaker’s Corner as its initial meeting place, saw fourteen politicians and diplomats gather for the first multilateral in-person meeting of members of the “MicroWiki community”.

Coup underway in New Virginia

Chaos erupted yesterday in the Commonwealth of New Virginia as President Kennedy suspended the constitution in response to a declaration of “revolution” before joining it herself.

Events began when Elizabeth Lewis published a poster in the “Announcements” channel on the official New Virginian Discord server.

Headed by a picture of Karl Marx, this poster called for an overthrow of the constitutional order, the “building of a socialist… state and party” and “the deportation of dangerous right wing figures”, before declaring “Long live the New Virginian revolution”.

A second graphic was then posted calling for the removal of Bradley of Dullahan, the Leader of the Opposition.

President Brooklyn Kennedy responded by assuming emergency powers, using the authority granted to her by the Constitution to suspend it “for the time being”, and announcing that all powers of state would be exercised by the Presidency until New Virginia could “return to a state of normalcy”.

Under ten minutes later, Kennedy made a second announcement, declaring her support for the “29th of July Movement” revolution. Claiming that the New Virginian parliament was “rife with reactionaries, racists, and elitists”, she stated that the “time has come for these men to be purged”.

The President went on to announce that all political parties were immediately dissolved, and power would be held by a Revolutionary Committee comprised of three people appointed and chaired by herself.

Sir Simon White, the New Virginian Prime Minister, refused to support the 29th of July Movement, stating “I cannot in good conscience support this insurrection. To outlaw reactionary partisanship is indeed a noble policy, but the outlawing of conservatism in general is utterly repugnant to this nation.”

It is furthermore being reported that Adam I of Adammia, who also serves as President of the Senate of New Virginia, has called on the Constitution to be immediately restored and for a general election to be called, criticising the committee for its lack of democratic mandate.

Adammia has announced that it has suspended relations with New Virginia, and Wyvern has indicated that it does not recognise the Revolutionary Committee as the legitimate government of the country.

In Austenasia, meanwhile, Cabinet met online to discuss the situation, and the following statement was co-authored by Emperor Jonathan I, Prime Minister Lord Gordon, and Deputy PM Lord Wilson:

“A hand of friendship, as always, is extended to the New Virginian people, but we cannot recognise an illegitimate government. If the situation has not been resolved with respect to the democratic rights and representation of all New Virginians within the next 36 hours, we will consider the New Virginian government to have fallen and therefore be incapable of maintaining diplomatic relations.”

Talks had been in the process of being arranged between Austenasian and New Virginian officials to discuss the way forward following the events of last month.

However, following the news of the ongoing coup in New Virginia, the House of Representatives met and voted on a motion calling for the Empire to withdraw from the alliance it still formally held with New Virginia. Independently, eighteen minutes later, the Revolutionary Committee likewise voted to sever the alliance.

Bradley von Dullahan later announced the unilateral secession of Helinium – the New Virginian claim governed by himself – from the Commonwealth, interpreting the rhetoric used by Kennedy and the other revolutionaries as thinly-veiled threats against his own position.

Lord William Wilson, who also serves as a local governor in New Virginia, said the following: “This coup is of a blatantly authoritarian nature, with a small cabal of politically aligned individuals surrounding the President. They have suspended their constitution and legislature, threatened the exile of political opposition, and used rhetoric of death to ‘capitalists’ and ‘reactionaries’.” He also accused the revolutionaries of seeking to turn New Virginia into an “echo chamber”.

Kennedy and Lewis have objected to this summary of events, stating they were “not just removing people for disagreeing with us”. They pointed out that von Dullahan left of his own accord – although Lewis later commented that he “left before he could be kicked [out]” – and argued that he could not technically be considered a political opponent of theirs as they both hold non-partisan offices.

Bradley of Dullahan provided the following exclusive statement to the Times:

“For a long time Brooke [Kennedy] and Elizabeth [Lewis] have been dissatisfied with the partisan politics that they enabled through the creation of the now abolished political system. It actually worked fine and was stable. A true multiparty system was developing slowly, with in my mind at least another party in the make. However, the government cabinet, as foolish as they were, schemed with the President to declare a fake emergency to amend the constitution. Now it has come to pass, they used some random offensive argument to push through their ideas and abolished the whole lot. Not at all what the Prime Minister had in mind.

They enabled the President by feeding her ideas that this was a good idea, and then when she took it a step further they were shocked and angry. However, my disappointment with New Virginia doesn’t end there. The entire justification of this inside coup (all members were government officials, so no “people’s revolution” at all) was on the basis of my person. They do not mention me by name, but every accusation they give is directly relatable to a warped and sickening view that Elizabeth has of me, which the President of the Commonwealth has adopted and used for the declaration. Its inaccurate, misleading, and highly offensive.

The President of the Commonwealth of New Virginia and all her cronies in the so-called commission for the salvation of New Virginia and everyone who joined in on the revolution are traitors. The rightful head of government is Simon White. They destroyed a nation without giving it time to grow.”

New Virginian Deputy PM James Frisch, who has refused to join the “29th of July Movement”, rejected the allegation that the government had “schemed with the President”, noting that the majority of the Cabinet has either opposed the revolution or kept silent.

Lewis was approached for further comment, together with another member of the Revolutionary Committee, but neither have so far replied.

Further updates will be posted as the situation develops.

Campo Del Sol dissolved as Albina convicted of treason

The Territory of Campo Del Sol was dissolved on Sunday 27th June in the aftermath of its founder, Sophia Albina, being convicted of treason for advocating its seizure by another country.

Self-portrait of Sophia Albina

In recent days, Albina has played a major role in a significant downturn in relations between Austenasia and its ally New Virginia, in which she is also a politician. This began after she made inflammatory statements in the New Virginian legislature which included false accusations against Austenasia as a whole and Emperor Jonathan I specifically, and introduced legislation to declare the Empire an “enemy” and “threat” and to claim the Austenasian territories of Campo Del Sol and Fraternitas.

New Virginia is a former Austenasian duchy which amicably seceded from the Empire in February last year. The two nations established a formal state of alliance upon New Virginian independence, and have maintained a strong friendship ever since.

Fraternitas had been part of one of the claims which joined the newly independent country, but was retained by the Empire at the suggestion of now President Kennedy in a gesture of goodwill and fraternity.

Campo Del Sol was claimed for Austenasia by Albina herself in June 2019. Neither area of land is inhabited.

It is unlikely that Albina’s proposed law will pass, but the inflammatory rhetoric used by Albina and the false accusations levelled against Austenasia have led to an increase in support within New Virginia for the idea of ending the alliance.

Senior New Virginian politicians downplayed Albina’s actions and rhetoric as that of a radical unrepresentative of the New Virginian government. However, Albina then spammed a Discord server hosted by the Austenasian government with images comparing herself to the rebels who fought against the Austenasian government in the 2010 civil war.

This resulted in a bill being introduced in Parliament to strip Albina of her nationality and titles and to dissolve Campo Del Sol, preventing it from being used as “leverage” against the Empire.

However, objections were raised given that action was being taken despite Albina not having been tried for her actions.

Due to encouraging another country to seize Austenasian land and actively working against Austenasia’s national security and international standing, treason charges were formally brought against Albina on Saturday 26th at the request of the Chief Inspector.

The evidence against her was presented, but despite being invited several times to make a legal defence she chose rather to use profane language and insult the jurors while making further unfounded accusations against the Austenasian government. In her final statement, she called for Campo Del Sol to be “freed” (despite the land being uninhabited and her claiming it for Austenasia in the first place) and for an unspecified “new Emperor” for Austenasia.

The jury presented a verdict of guilty the following morning. The Consuls – Duke Bradley of Dullahan and Princess Hannah Augusta – agreed on a sentence of indefinite exile, with Albina now forbidden to enter Austenasia until the Throne sees fit to allow it.

With Albina having been given a chance to defend her actions, the bill previously proposed in Parliament was passed, dissolving Campo Del Sol and stripping her of her Austenasian national status and titles.

An online meeting between diplomatic representatives of Austenasia and New Virginia has been proposed for the near future to discuss the downturn in relations and search for a resolution.

Alliance established with Wyvern

One of Austenasia’s oldest international friends, the Kingdom of Wyvern, has entered into an official alliance with the Empire of Austenasia upon the signing of a treaty earlier today between the sovereigns of the two countries.

Flag of the Kingdom of Wyvern

Although Austenasia maintains close and friendly diplomatic relations with numerous nations – forty two, at present -the formal status of “ally” is an extremely prestigious one, granted only to Austenasia’s very closest international partners.

Austenasia has only had two other official allies: the Kingdom of Wilcsland from 2010 to 2013, and the Commonwealth of New Virginia since its amicable secession from the Empire in February last year.

The addition of Wyvern to this exclusive group marks the first time Austenasia has had more than one official ally at the same time.

An alliance includes a provision for mutual defence, distinguishing it from other forms of diplomatic ties, no matter how friendly. Austenasia and Wyvern have accordingly pledged in today’s treaty to “come upon request to the other’s defence in the case of an attack by a third party”.

Wyvern and Austenasia officially entered into mutual recognition on 27 January 2014, but had interacted in the diplomatic sphere for several years preceding that, albeit not always on the best of terms. Relations slowly began to improve, and a national friendship was solidified with a treaty on 21 September 2016.

Relations between the two countries have only grown closer since then, leading to the recent decision to establish a formal state of alliance.

Diplomatic relations established with Vishwamitra

Flag of Vishwamitra

Emperor Jonathan I yesterday signed a treaty of mutual recognition with the State of Vishwamitra, establishing friendly diplomatic relations with said nation.

Vishwamitra is an elective absolute monarchy which declared independence from India in 2007. Originally created by a group of childhood friends, it was first known simply as the “Children’s Group”, eventually evolving into the sophisticated nation it is today.

Vishwamitra has a population of 80 citizens. Its monarch, Dhrubajyoti Roy, has reigned since August last year and holds the title Rashtradhyaksh (Hindi for “head of state”). The monarch is elected to a three year term by and from the six rulers of Vishwamitra’s constituent states.