Indian Country Today - Media Network
25 July 2013
The Queen of England may have gained a royal heir in young Prince George, but she's lost a nation.
In a surprisingly dated process, the Australian Aboriginal nation of Murrawarri has declared its independence from the Crown and formed its own government. As explained at firstpeoples.org, British common law allows the Empire to lay claim to a territory in only three ways: conquest, treaty, or vacancy (the legal concept of terra nullis). The Murrawarri Nation submitted a letter to Queen Elizabeth giving her 28 days to furnish documents -- such as a declaration of war or a signed treaty -- proving that any three of these conditions had been met. The Queen failed to respond by the May 8 deadline, so the Republic of Murrawarri formed an interim government which consists of a Peoples Council and a Chairman.
According to the nation's official website, the country's area is approxmately 31,000 square miles, although a calculation on Wikipedia finds it to be significantly smaller. The Murrawarri lands straddle the border between the provinces of Queensland and New South Wales.