Meet the man who founded a country he’s now barred from entering
He created the world’s most famous micro-nation — and now he’s banned!
This is Vit Jedlicka, the man who founded the fledgling nation of Liberland. He’s not the first man to found his own micro-nation, but he may well be the last.
Jedlicka rose to international attention in 2015 when he claimed a small parcel of land between Croatia and Serbia and began setting up his own self-governing nation state.
His claim was based upon a long-standing dispute between the rival nations concerning where their mutual border lay. Following the break up of Yugoslavia, the borders were re-drawn.
This gave Serbia more land (despite losing the territory of Liberland), while Croatia refused to claim Liberland, as doing so would give legal acknowledgement of the new border, and in effect mean their territories shrunk.
Therefore, along came Jedlicka, who seized the unclaimed land and christened it Liberland. And for a while, all was well. There were no gun laws, no compulsory taxation and the trading currency was Bitcoin.
Libertarians from across the globe flocked to populate the new country, which had recently elected Jedlicka as its first President (he gained all three votes, one of which was his girlfriend), while thousands more signed up for citizenship online.
Jedlicka has appointed a cabinet, accrued sizeable donations from libertarian donors and even printed his own diplomatic passports. However, despite the considerable success the fledgling nation has enjoyed, there’s been one major stumbling block.
Rightly or wrongly, Croatian authorities have been arresting and fining everyone who steps foot in Liberland. From the President right down to humble citizens, anyone found attempting to cross the river into the micro-nation is promptly placed into custody.
The reason being that, although Croatia refuses to acknowledge any claim over the disputed territory, it definitely doesn’t want a gun-toting libertarian paradise right on its doorstep either. So the police duly stepped in.
In spite of his ban, Jedlicka is managing to keep the spirit of Liberland alive through a popular social media presence. He continues to attend libertarian conferences around the world, offering advice and spreading the message his country seeks to offer.
Vit Jedlicka is a determined man, that’s for sure. But not content with simply telling people about his former nation, he’s began rebuilding it.
Recently, a Croatian judge ruled that the courts did not possess the competency to pass a ruling on the case of the disputed territory and subsequently adjourned. In the mean time, Jedlicka has been busying himself with constructing a floating Liberland on the river which separates his territories from Croatia.
He argues a temporary settlement can be erected, and has already began constructing homes, amenities and meeting halls in his floating Liberland replacement.
With the court case concerning Liberland’s legality due to resume this year, and a fully-stocked ministerial cabinet appointed, Jedlicka has turned his attention to the next most important item on his political agenda.
Registering Liberland’s football team in time for the 2018 ConIFA World Cup. We, for one, hope they’re accepted.