| Alriggian Republic |
The Old Oil Rig
|Anthem: Psalm 107 23-32|
|16.1.3 - current|
|Largest city||Driftwood, Sint Anna|
|Official language(s)||common Alriggian|
|- President||Hieronim Erazm|
|- Legislature||Council of Driftwood|
|National animal||Limbless mule|
|National food||Spiced cheese|
|National drink||Elderflower tea|
|National tree||Apollonian poplar|
The Alriggian Republic, formerly known as The Old Oil Rig is a nation located in Southern Apollonia. The nation was established late in the year 1656 and first tried to claim land on Micras in the beginning of 1657. The first claim was quickly denied because the nation was not old enough at the time of claiming. A second claim in late 1657 was brought before the MCS. The nation tried to claim an oil rig in the middle of the North Raynor Sea that was not depicted on the MCS map, sparking a debate within the MCS about the legality of such a claim on a man-made structure. An earthquake resulting in a tsunami in 1657 made this entire discussion unnecessary however as the oil rig that had been the home base of the nation was torn from its anchoring in the ocean and crashed on the Southern Apollonian shore. The first claim on that location was accepted by the MCS not much later that year.
Over the course of the years the old oil rig that was lying on the beach east of the nation's capital, Driftwood, deteriorated. Scavengers would take bits and pieces of it to use on their own structures until not much was left. As the nation's name "old oil rig" no longer corresponded with something tangible, the name which wasn't considered to have any remaining meaning became subject to phonetic and phonological changes. This change was codified in the 1663 constitution which updated the name of the nation to the "Alriggian Republic" based on the name "Alrig" which the people gave to their common land.
In early 1673 the United North Apollonian Company was established and funded with a loan of 50,000¤ from the Alriggian state. The goal of the company was to gain a foothold in North Apollonian trade with communities in the Green. The Jingdaoese port of Xiaochincheng was the first base of operations before the United North Apollonian Company tried to found its own city on an island off the North Apollonian coast.
The republic is a member of the Micras Treaty Organisation and the Union of States around the Sovereign Oceans. It does not send envoys to other nations than its largest neighbor, Jingdao, and until 1673, it did no pursue relations with other nations. While the Florian Republic borders Alrig in the north, there is no diplomatic contact with Floria at all, nor are there any border crossings.
In 1663 the Alriggian Republic signed a treaty with its much more powerful neighbor, the Jingdaoese Empire. The Alriggian Republic agreed to comply to market regulations and adopt the Jingdaoese Kala, in return the Jingdaoese Empire helped the Alriggian Republic to settle land on its borders. In 1664 the Jingdaoese-Alriggian Alliance also started the construction of an international highway to connect the nations. Given the strong military and economic ties between Alrig and Jingdao, and the unequal balance of power, Alrig is often seen as a Jingdaoese satellite state. Since the inception of the alliance, president Hieronim Erazm has traveled to Daocheng every Spring to pay tribute to the Jingdaoese Emperor. While some opposition to the treaty has been voiced in the Council of Driftwood, the general consensus in Alrig seems to be that the treaties provide stability and welfare that would otherwise be hard to acquire.
In 1670 a joint military exercise was held, in which over 800 Jingdaoese tanks and almost 40,000 soldiers took place, equal to nearly half the Alriggian population.
In 1672 a treaty was signed between Alrig and Jingdao, which transferred the responsibility for the Alriggian armed forces to the Imperial Armed Forces. 14,200 Alriggian citizens were drafted into the Fourth Field Army's Alrig Corps. The Alrig Corps consists of two infantry brigades and one field artillery brigade. Of these, only the field artillery brigade and headquarters are on permanent duty.
Relations between Alrig and Alduria were first established in 1673 when the latter called for help during the Water crisis in Alduria. Alrig was the first nation to send water to Alduria to try to relieve the plight of the Aldurians. It was also an early supporter of the MTO Mission to Alduria.
The economy of Alrig is closely integrated with the market of Jingdao, with Alrig complying with Jingdaoese market regulations and having adopted the Jingdaoese kala. Alriggian companies take full advantage of their access to the Jingdaoese markets and are usually active in logistics, transport or trade. Unlike Jingdaoese citizens, Alriggian citizens do not need special permits to travel outside their home district, which gives them an advantage even in the Jingdaoese internal market. Unlike Jingdao, Alrig lacks the manpower to set up a strong industrial sector and imports most of its goods from its larger neighbor. The Alriggian agricultural produces mainly for the local market, with some high-end products, such as prize winning cheeses, being exported to the Jingdaoese elite.
The Alriggian Republic has 87,521 citizens, of which approximately 43,000 live in the capital city of Driftwood and its surroundings. The second city of Sint Anna has about 20,000 inhabitants. While the republic does not record ancestry, most citizens have Batavian, Jingdaoese and Walstädter forefathers. The dialect of Driftwood is influenced by the South Cibolan Saxon of Walstadt, while most people in the former Batavian city of Sint Anna have Batavian as their first language.
The customary religion everyone in Natopia is expected to adhere to is Alriggian theism, which is the belief in a supreme God who can be called Lord. This public adherence to a single and simple religion was instated to prevent religious turmoil in the small nation. In private, many citizens practice one of the more common religions known to Micras.
Most Alriggians follow the Catologian faith in its South Batavian, Batavian or Flemish form. Followers of the Tianchaodao, the worship of the Heavenly Light are also numerous and usually belong to the Jingdaoese minority. Bassarid merchants are known to perform rituals related to the Stripping Path in their houses of worship.
Atheism, publicly denouncing the belief in a supreme deity, is not considered acceptable in Alrig and will lead to social exclusion. Agnostic views on the Lord are not seen usually seen as problematic. In the state census, information on religious affiliation is not recorded, as this is seen as potentially inciting towards religious intolerance.
Government and politics
The nation's constitution consists of only two brief articles, one about the office of president, the other about the Council of Driftwood. The president is elected by all Alriggian citizens and has the power to make law. He can however be overruled by the Council of Driftwood, which is composed of all citizens who hold at least three acres of land. The nation has been presided over by Hieronim Erazm since its inception.
The most popular sport in Alrig is association football, which is commonly referred to as just sport. While the national football association, ERAS only organizes professional matches, it is played by a large part of the population. This usually takes place in ad hoc formations, as amateur sports are not formally organized. Many matches are played between amateur teams of neighboring villages or city quarters.