By now, most South Maudlandian citizens, and perhaps even some of the wider micronational community, will have heard of the Pannonian Crisis: the ongoing situation in the Autonomous Region of Pannonia, wherein a new country called Liberland claimed territory already claimed by South Maudlandia. From an external perspective, this may sound like a molehill being quickly transformed into a mountain. However, there is more to the Crisis’s backstory than that. Liberland’s extraordinary popularity and Vít Jedlička’s massive profits off this venture are the subject of articles in seemingly every small paper worldwide, and have even captured the attention of bigger newspapers, like The Guardian and The Independent. The rapid rise of Liberland is eclipsing any recognition of the land’s original owner.
Exactly one week ago, the South Maudlandian Government sent a message to Liberland, politely notifying them of the existing claim on Pannonia (or Siga, for those who wish to remain neutral), and calling for peaceful negotiation. A week later, a reply is yet to be issued, and thus we can fairly safely assume that Jedlička is unwilling to co-operate on the matter.
To further complicate the already tense situation between the two states, several other micronations also lay claim to the region. The most notable of these is Paraduin, a country gaining a small amount of notoriety for pulling down the Liberlandian flag flying over Siga, as well as for a less-than-serious official site. The legitimacy of Paraduinian sovereignty is actually unclear, at least in the eyes of South Maudlandian authorities. Paraduin variously cite two different dates for their claim: 5 March and 1 April 2015. This presents a problem, in that the date of the South Maudlandian claim is 18 March, nearly exactly halfway between the two. One theory is that a declaration of annexation was signed on the former date, but not approved by the parliament until the latter.
Macronational intervention has also somewhat inflamed the situation. Croatian authorities are reported to have implemented a roadblock and fenced off the area, evidently implying that they hold some level of jurisdiction over it. Oddly enough, these are the same authorities who previously rejected all claim to Siga in favour of territories on the opposite bank of the Danube, thus creating the terra nullius in the first place. According to the Confederation of Âûtia, yet another micronation intent on making a claim to the territory, overnight stays and the planting of flags are now illegal too.
However, as long as Croatia affirm that they don’t own the territory (while showing signs suggesting the exact opposite) and Paraduin keep confusing everyone with mixed messages, the biggest threat of all to South Maudlandian sovereignty over Pannonia is Liberland. Perhaps the region is on the brink of war after all, thanks to President Jedlička’s lack of diplomatic competence.