Can You Start Your Own Country?

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What do you have to do to start your own country?
With the current political climate being what it is, many of you might be thinking to yourselves- I’ll just start my own country. If so, you’d be joining the ranks of Somaliland, Transnistria, and the Principality of Sealand to name a few. But what is the exact process of starting your own country, how can you do so legally, and how can you be recognized by the global community as an independent nation? Welcome to another episode of The Infographics Show- today we’re taking a look at how to start your own country.

The first step to starting your own country will be territory- after all a country can’t really be a country without, well, a countryside. Unfortunately for you all the prime real estate has already been gobbled up, so if you’re seeking to form your new country peacefully you’re probably going to have to go remote- really remote. Several islands around the South Pacific remain unclaimed by any sovereign state and are today just waiting to be made into independent nations- although given their extreme remoteness, good luck getting basic goods and services there. Alternatively you could look for small parcels of land around the world that rest between major powers yet neither lay claims to. The micro-state of Liberland for example was formed from territory along the Danube that neither Croatia nor Serbia lay claim to. It’s size is only 2.7 square miles (7 square kilometers), but with only a handful of citizens there’s plenty of space to be sovereign. If you’re looking for other available real estate you could take a claim in Bir Tawil which lies between Egypt and Sudan (spoiler alert: it’s a barren desert with no access to fresh water), or portions of Antarctica.

If none of the available less-than-prime real estate appeals to you, you could always just build your own. Per international law nations can only claim up to 12 miles past their shores- so if you had the money to, you could start dredging up the sea floor and build a brand new island nation of your own. The cost would be staggering, but it is an option available to you. Alternatively you could try your hand at building a floating nation- many architecture firms around the world have drawn up very realistic, if also extremely expensive, plans for floating cities. While the technical know-how is certainly there, the capital is definitely not. But maybe you don’t just want to declare independence from your home country, but from the surface world entirely. You could take the Bioshock route and build a city on the seafloor itself and declare yourself sovereign. Whether that’s technically feasible with today’s technology is a complete toss-up, but legally speaking you would be well within your rights to do so. If you think it would be easier to simply dig down below an existing nation and declare your independence mole-people style, that’s probably not going to work as laws dictating just how far down national sovereignty goes aren’t very clear- but given that the deepest mines in the world still fall under national sovereignty you’re going to at least have to go deeper than the Mponeng gold mine in South Africa, which is 2.5 miles (4 km) deep. At those depths heat from the earth’s core raises the temperature to 100 degrees or more (38 celsius), so we hope you like it hot.





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