Just like Biafra: 9 independence movements that could reshape the world

Just like Biafra: 9 independence movements that could reshape the world

What is a separatist or independence movement? Wikipedia says separatist movements may seek nothing more than greater autonomy or to be recognized as a national minority.

Such movements, have active movements with active members, seek greater autonomy or self-determination for a geographic region as opposed to personal autonomy and they are citizens/peoples of the conflict area and do not come from another country.

NAIJ.com earlier made a list of such movements around Africa. Below are some others around the world:

1. Scotland

A referendum on Scottish independence was first held in September 2014, when 55% voted against the proposal. One of the reasons cited by those opposed to Scottish independence was that it would endanger Scotland being part of the European Union (EU).

There were plans to hold another referendum in 2017, but it did not hold. Nicola Ferguson Sturgeon, the current first minister of Scotland and leader of the Scottish National Party, called for an independence referendum to be held in the autumn of 2018 or the spring of 2019.

2. Wales

Though the Welsh independence movement has a long history, the question of Scottish independence has exhumed a substantive debate on Welsh independence. The region enjoys a fair amount of autonomy and has its own assembly government.

Membership in one of Wales' biggest nationalist parties, Plaid Cymru, has jumped significantly in recent years.

3. Flanders

Although not all Flemish citizens want outright independence, many seek greater autonomy from the current Belgian government, in order to protect Flemish culture and the Dutch language.

Recently, political parties that favor more autonomy have had huge gains in Dutch politics — on Sunday, the leader of the separatist party NV-A was elected mayor of Antwerp.

READ ALSO: If they want Biafra, let them take the proper steps - Prof Orkar

4. Catalonia

The Catalonian independence movement has been around for quite some time. The region has its own unique language, culture, dining specialties, and architecture.

The movement subsided in large part, but Spain's economic downturn has driven many Catalonians in favor of independence. Catalonia is Spain's wealthiest autonomous community, and pays more in taxes to the federal government than it receives — much to the ire of Catalonians.

5. Basque Country

The Basque country, which lies on the border between Spain and France, has long sought independence based on its unique cultural identity and distinct language; however, the separatist movement has been marred by violence. ETA, the primary Basque separatist and independence movement, is known more for its terrorist activities than its diplomatic negotiations.

But in 2011, ETA declared its armed campaign to be over. The organization has violated ceasefires before, but to date the agreement appears to have ended the violence.

6. Venice

One of Italy's most scenic cities wants has recently declared that it wants to to break away from the country, rather than be burdened by austerity measures. In early October thousands gathered in protest throughout Venice to call for independence.

Venice and the surrounding Veneto area was an independent republic during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. It has only been a part of the Italy since the Third Italian War of Independence united the country 146 years ago.

Local polls declared that 70-80 percent of Venetians favored breaking away from Italy.

READ ALSO: Humanity remains silent to the massacre in Myanmar and Biafra - Turkish diplomat vows to address UN

7. Quebec

The French-speaking Candian province has always prided itself on its francophonic roots, and last month's elections reflects this sentiment.

The Parti Quebecois (PQ), which advocates sovereignty for Quebec, gained 54 seats in the Quebec general election — enough to form a minority government.

8. Kurdistan

Kurdistan refers to a region dominated by the eponymously named people located in eastern Turkey, eastern Syria, northern Iraq, northern Iran, and partially in Armenia.

Although Iraqi Kurdistan has a semi-autonomous status within Iraq, many Kurdish organizations call for the creation of an independent Kurdish state, based on their independent language and culture.

The main separatist organization, the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), has branches in Syria, Turkey, and Iraq. It is classified as a terrorist organization by the U.S. and the E.U.

Not only are the Kurds caught in their own battle for independence, but the conflict in Syria has Turkey concerned over its own Turkish minority.

9. Abkhazia and South Ossetia

Sovereignty over the two self-declared republics in the Caucasus has been a hot topic since the 2008 South Ossetian War between Russia, Georgia and the separatists governments in the two "breakaway republics."

The war started when Georgian forces occupied South Ossetia in order to assert its control and to respond to attacks on peacekeeprs, much to the chagrin of Russia — which is supported by the unrecognized government in South Ossetia. Russian peacekeepers were killed in the Georgian occuptation, so Russia responded by invading both South Ossetia and Abkhazia

Today, the regions are technically under Georgian sovereignty, and most states do not recognize the Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent states.

Meanwhile, a pro-Biafra group, Biafra National Guard, has warned the Nigerian army to put an to its ongoing Operation Python Dance II in the southeast or its members will begin self defense.

According to a statement, the group said the military operation in the south-east is a plot to end the lives of secession agitators in the area.

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NAIJ.com learnt that the group said it would resist the unlawful killings of southeast indigenes by the army.

Watch this video of Nnamdi Kanu's lawyer speaking on the alleged siege by the Nigerian army:

Source: Naija.ng

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