Declaration of independence

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A Declaration of Independence is an assertion of the independence of an aspiring state or states. Such places are usually declared from part or all of the territory of another nation or failed nation, or are breakaway territories from within the larger state. Not all declarations of independence are successful and result in independence for these regions.

Such declarations are typically made without the consent of the parent state, and hence are sometimes called unilateral declarations of independence (UDI), particularly by those who question the declarations' validity. According to an advisory opinion, concerning the 2008 Kosovo declaration of independence, issued in July, 2010 by the World Court, issuing a declaration of independence is not a violation of international law.[1]

Independence without a declaration

In many cases, independence is achieved without a declaration of independence but instead occurs by bilateral agreement. An example of this is the independence of many components of the British Empire, most parts of which achieved independence through negotiation with the United Kingdom government and legislation by the Parliament of the United Kingdom. Australia and Canada, for example, achieved full independence through a series of acts of their respective national governments and parliaments and the British government and parliament.

On the other hand, regions often achieve de facto independence, but do not make a formal declaration. Notable examples include Taiwan, which China has threatened to invade should it officially declare independence. Iraqi Kurdistan was de facto independent from the central Iraqi government between the Persian Gulf War and the Iraq War, but could not declare statehood out of fear of losing international support. Such regions often refer to themselves as autonomous regions, with or without the assent of the central government.

See also


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