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The Antargic Treaty


Orioni

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(OOC discussion is located here.)

 

09:00h
EOS island HQ
Tamurin Sea

 

With the Orioni election of 2015, and the strange events that followed it, Anna Hackney had found herself both in and out of a job.

For many years she had served as deputy to Sir Pipkin, the councillor of foreign affairs. Her loyalty had been rewarded... by being restationed. No more international flights with her old boss. She would forego the banquets and balls. Sir Pipkin had been very understanding of her wish to be stationed closer to the home island. Anna had told him she wanted to start a family.

And that's how she ended up becoming Orioni's permanent representative to the Entente of Oriental States. For the past two years, she had shuttled back and forth between EOS island and Nordhaven. She loved her new job. And she loved her little boy back home.

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pic.pngEOS headquarters

Mrs Hackney walked into the circular conference room that was reserved for large format discussions. Her staff had been busy preparing for another event. The number of participating representatives was not yet clear. Some would probably login via remote video connection. While other were still on their way by aeroplane.

The topic of discussion could hardly be ignored. With three separate claims in only 24 hours, the "Scramble for Antargis", as certain media called it, was quickly becoming a flashpoint for international politics. As one of the parties involved, the EOS council agreed to host this conference. They wanted to avoid at all cost that this claim and counterclaim for Antargis would turn violent. A peaceful framework needed to be established.

Such an exciting time to be involved with politics!

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6:30 AM Eurofuhrerian Time
Private Airstrip, Belgrade, Serbia Administrative District,
Eurof?hrer

Born in the dictatorship era of The Eurofuhrer, Boris Herjavec was not a man to be pushed around. He served with dignity as a bombardier in the Second Civil War for the dictator, and he still has part of that fiery spirit inside of him.

A staple in Belgrade, Boris started politics after his military career. He briefly served as Secretary of Defense under former president Roko Teodosic.

After he was ousted as secretary, a few years later he said that he would, "Keep the Eurofuhrerian interests at heart for every citizen, protect the goals, territory, and scientific advances made by our great country." His approval ratings skyrocketed, and President Divac realized that this would only bolster his approval rating.

Boris' first major success came with establishing an alliance with Prymont, then the Sunset Sea Islands. Now he meets them again on a much bigger international stage, as the Eurofuhrerians have announced their plans to explore the frigid continent. With the EOS and SSI involved as global heavyweights, he felt a bit isolated as a much smaller and less experienced nation. However, he vowed to "Fight for the Slavs!" and he was going to do just that. As he boarded the plane for the day he thought,"This could really bolster our international reputation." Whether that would be for the better or worse had not been decided yet. Once he got composed, he sat down at his seat and started doing more mundane work. "This could be my biggest break." the 57-year-old said. He saw a grey wisp of his hair fall out, and he knew it wouldn't be the last for this cold situation.

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09:15h
EOS island HQ
Tamurin Sea

Adelina Valyrissi had served as the Consortium's senior representative to EOS for the past seven years. She had lobbied Myriandrus endlessly to take more interest in the proceeds, but had seen her staff gutted after a series of budget cutbacks to the State Department. Many in her government thought EOS a relic of a bygone era, useful only to forward Miirosi trade interests in Orioni, and to excuse intervention in the affairs of the insular member states of the Entente.

Adelina could not remember the last time anyone from the State Department had taken much note of the news from EOS HQ. Many considered her post a stepping stone to higher office, a place to bulk up the foreign policy credentials before running for a seat in the Byrsa. Still, she had taken a shine to the place and stayed on longer than most, and finally, things seemed to be looking up.

The sudden attention paid to the Antargis has caught Myriandrus off guard. Several of the Consortium's largest corporations felt the frozen continent was ripe for energy exploration and had already approached members of the administration about devoting resources to a new public-private partnership. Partnering with the Orioni scientific mission seemed an innocuous inroad and a natural path forward. Adelina felt Antargis presented the best opportunity in a long while to increase Miirosi interest and involvement in EOS.

She walked into the conference room accompanied by a small entourage of her senior staff, who had been busy preparing for the conference after Orioni had announced it. She spotted many of the fixtures of the EOS political scene, but hoped to see many new faces as the day proceeded.

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9:23 EOS Time
EOS Island HQ
Tamurin Sea

As Boris walked in the room he felt an air of something different... what was it... ah yes! dignified countries. The days of alliances with hateful fascists were long gone for the nation, but as he walked into the room he could not overlook his war heroics. His advisor Igor, was with him as he sat down at the reserved seat. He looked around the room and saw the Miirosi diplomat seated across from him, and the Orionii delegate next to him.

"I awoke the sleeping giant in Miros," he thought to himself jokingly. An embassy had been established with Orioni, de facto leader of the EOS. No talks had went on with Miros. Perhaps a good thing can come out of this conference. The Sunset Sea Islandian diplomat had not walked in yet. The SSI was the leader of the ISTC. The Eurofu?hrer was the only country not part of an international union at this conference. Perhaps it was because of the fact that they are halfway around the world, and very isolated from any nearby active neighbors. The country had to rely on its tourism and advanced skills to survive in the competitive world. Boris sat outlining his bullet points on his paper, and looked at what point to place the greatest stress on.

He hoped the meeting would go smoothly, and that he could avoid direction from their state planned economy.

Igor had the early infrastructure plans and papers in his case in case they were called on.

Boris greeted Hackney, the Orioni delegate, and waited for when the meeting would start.

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09:30h
EOS Island HQ

In the past, foreign relations had been kept in the foreground in order to stabilize the domestic situation in Girkmand. The slow transition to peace allowed for international politics to thaw back into the political scene. The relatively late entry of Girkmand into the World Assembly in 2009 was spearheaded by ex-President Joseph Gage, who advocated for greater Girkmandian influence in foreign affairs.

The public had taken great interest in the Scramble for Antargis, which further prompted the Federal Council to levy a delegation from the Federal Ministry for Foreign Affairs. 58-year old Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs and Vice President Tommy Howitzer was chosen as the chief representative.

Bolstered by his rank of lieutenant in the Federal Army, Howitzer's integration into the Girkmandian political atmosphere dominated almost exclusively by ex-servicemen was swift and painless. After gaining great popularity as a tribune in the National Tribunal and briefly serving as the Speaker of the Tribune, he was invited to join the Webb cabinet where he assumed the position of federal minister for foreign affairs. As per the constitution, the position of vice president is not an independent office, but rather a position held by one of the ministers. Tommy Howitzer was later appointed as vice president by President Gerald Webb.

Vice President Tommy Howitzer entered the conference room accompanied by three other federal ministers from the Department of Global Affairs and two young uniformed army conscripts serving as security detail. The party found their seats a few steps down the aisle, exchanging friendly nods and quiet hellos with the delegates of other countries along the way. Once the ministers and the vice president were seated the two conscripts made their way out of the conference room, lamenting to each other about the loss of their weekend holidays.

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0500hrs
Fort Kanacky
Verandi, United States of Prymont

If there was one thing that Ralph Lowe had learned since the elections in July, it was that President George Duval was not a morning person. The National Party Senior Advisor had been appointed due to his close relations with President Duval, and their rich history in politics together. They'd worked in cooperation for over a decade and knew each other quite well. During their time in partnership, there were several early morning starts, but the future President had always covered up his irritable dawn attitude with a cold grin and a hot cup of coffee. While others would've formed a tight shell of professionalism and seriousness when thrust into a position of power, George Duval instead chose to relax and open up to those in his cabinet. This meant that Mr Lowe gained a deeper insight into the personality of the President, and quickly learned not to disturb him before his office opened at 9am.

And so, when an email from the Beautiful Empire of Orioni, leader of EOS, was received at 4am this morning, requesting their presence at a treaty surrounding the future of the continent of Antargis, Lowe knew that his President wouldn't want to divulge into rich detail. He'd want short, snappy answers, getting straight to the point while he let his coffee wake him up. 

Lowe didn't particularly mind mornings, even when it was still more or less twilight. He'd quickly prepared himself and boarded a government helicopter to take him to Fort Kanacky, where a newly built Presidential Nålestråle was waiting for them. The plane hadn't yet been released to the public, but the government had requested that manufacturers Aamotech furnished their first model for government use. The supersonic jet was designed to compete against Fleur de Lys' Concorde, and perhaps their choice to use this plane for the conference, in which @Fleur de Lys would almost certainly be attending, was questionable, but now was not the time for trivial matters. Meetings about the Nålestråle and Concorde would come later. Now was the time for Antargis.

The Initiative Scientifique Trans-Continentale had been established largely in mind of creating research bases on the frozen continent, and as such, any matters surrounding Antargis was of high importance. Since the end of the communist era in which isolationism was a priority, the President had aimed to promote Prymont in a positive light among its international peers and play an active role in the global community. Attending this conference would be one of their first appearances under the new government, and a good impression had to be made.

The President finally arrived at the runway, where the Nålestråle's thrusters were whirring in anticipation. Lowe handed him a slim folder of documents to read on the flight as they boarded, the President nursing a large flask.

"Morning George. Long story short, Orioni have summoned nations across the globe to EOS Island to discuss what's going to happen with Antargis. I'm sure you've ready the preparatory email already so I'll let you settle in and we'll discuss more on the flight."

They took their seats, buckled up, and the jet began taxiing for takeoff.

During the flight, news reached the President that Fleur de Lys would in fact be attending, alongside ancient state @Miiros , @The Eurofuhrer , and @Girkmand . Fellow ISTC members had also been contacted, and would surely be in attendance too. With the plane's supersonic capabilities being exercised on the flight they'd reach EOS Island in no time. 


0936hrs
EOS Island HQ
Tamurin Sea

President Duval took his seat in the conference suite next to his senior advisor, who was already opening his laptop to prepare for note-taking. A connection had been established with Environment Minister Kip Schmidt, who was eagerly awaiting news. The President busied himself on his mobile phone, quickly scrolling through his emails as he sipped on his drink. They were still awaiting the arrival of a few more nations, and so time could be spent catching up on matters back at home. Nothing particularly took his interest, and so he directed his attention on the folder Lowe had handed him before the flight for a final read. 

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In Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauves office.

Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve had her hands full of paperwork. Lately, her duties have piled on top of one another and she had only a very small amount of time left for herself. Mrs Mauve looked at the smartwatch on her wrist. It was only one hour left until she could call in her chauffeur (an older gentleman trained in Great Burlington) to drive her home. More and more people switched to autonomous cabs to commute during the last few months, but she preferred to have a human driver behind the wheel. She felt old, the younger generation has started to embrace the age of technology and AI completely. She got sidetracked. Once more, she started reading the paper in front of her face.

Suddenly, the sensor on the other side of her office door registered a touch. Somebody wanted to enter. Her watch displayed the name and the face of the person on the other side. Dr Mauve looked up angrily and shouted: "Come in!" Her voice was recognised by the operating system which opened the door.

A clerk appeared. Mrs Mauve looked at the young man. He was an intern who started his internship just two weeks ago. "Young man," the Prime Minister began, "I know you're an eager young man but can't you see that my desk is full of due papers? I may be the head of this government, but that doesn't mean I have time for all of those minor issues the people send in four times a day." "Mrs Mauve, this is urgent! EOS has laid a claim on Antargis!" the intern said in a worried voice.

This really sounded urgent. "Give that to me." ordered the Prime Minister. The intern obeyed immediately. Dr Mauve started to read with haste. The paper was not only urgent, it was serious. The ISTC had just published their goals of protecting the frosty continent and investing some serious money into exploring and studying the southernmost part of the world. The last thing the initiative could use now was competition from the most powerful supranational organisation of the world.

Not even a second after finishing the paper Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve activated the touch display in her desktop. With a few swift moves, she made dramatic changes in her schedule. The paper included an invitation to the EOS headquarters, EOS Island. This upcoming debate would be one of the hardest hurdles in her career. A few touches later a flight to EOS island was booked. She would be taking the governmental Concorde, one of the newly purchased Lysian planes.

As if Lydia didn't have enough tasks on her shoulders. She desperately carved for vacations. Maybe she'd go on a ski trip to Prymont? She got sidetracked again.

"Coffee, now." The OS registered her command once more. A coffee machine slid out of her desk and a second later hot coffee was being poured into a mug.

This would be a long night. She sent her chauffeur a message, that he didn't have to pick her up tonight. She'd probably have to spend the night in her office.

 

On the Concorde to EOS Island.

Although still tired, Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve was in a slightly better mood than when she first read about the plans for the Antargic continent of the Entente. The goals of the ISTC and EOS were not that different. Both wanted to protect the continent and to establish research bases. Being the skilled diplomat that she is, Lydia Mauve saw the potential for cooperation immediately.

There were a few points she'd have to negotiate. Exploitation of Antargis for industrial reasons was out of the question. The world has taken substantial damage from the last decades of human activity, Dr Mauve could not allow them to touch the sanctuary of nature in the south. The territorial claims were less of a problem.

Negotiating areas for the protection of the icy continent has been on her agenda already. The overlaps of EOS and ISTC claims could be resolved as well, she was sure of that. Maybe the ISTC could change their plans to administer one larger zone together, just like EOS planned to.

EOS were smart people, politicians, diplomats and most of all scientists like her. She was sure that she would be able to have fruitful negotiations with them. Cooperation was her eternal mantra. "This is for the good of all of us." Mauve thought. If the two organisations and other attendees of the discussion would come to an agreement, the results would be beneficial for generations to come.

 

EOS Headquarters.

Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve had always wanted to visit the EOS headquarters. The futuristic architecture reminded her of the building complexes of the Institute of Applied Sciences in Asimov. After this was over, she had to do some sightseeing.

Lydia Mauve entered the conference room. Several world leaders had arrived before her. She went to the chair labelled with her name. Next to her were seats for the other ISTC member representatives or screens, which displayed the video feeds of those, who were unable to attend the conference in person.

The large monitor on the other side of the room, which almost covered all of the wall, lit up and displayed a map of the southernmost continent.

The conference was about to start.

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Day 1
Antargic Conference
EOS island HQ

Anna Hackney was eager to get these multilateral talks underway. The response from all invitees had been overwhelming. But nothing the EOS HQ couldn't handle. The headquarters was well equipped for large conferences like this one. The technology was not updated in the last couple of years, but the 2014 systems were still quite capable. The only complaint she had heard was the sporadic lack of a clear WiFi signal in deeper parts of the complex.

There had been many cordial greetings in the large hall. Representatives from all nations were glad to see each other again. Some of them, especially the members of EOS and ISTC, were already quite familiar with each other.

  • There was Boris Herjavec from @The Eurofuhrer .
  • The consortium of @Miiros had sent Adelina Valyrissi, senior representative to EOS for the past seven years. 
  • From @Girkmand there came the chief representative 58-year old Tommy Howitzer, who also served as Vice President and Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs.
  • The representative from @Fleur de Lys is ambassador Julie Tanaux.
  • There was President George Duval of @Prymont, who seemed rather tired from his long flight.
  • And Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve from the @Sunset Sea Islands, another member of the ISTC.

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:pic: Anna Hackney reading her opening statement (Roiters Press)

At 10:00h, everyone had finally found their seat and the conference could begin. As the organiser, the audience expected Mrs Hackney to give an opening statement.

"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to the conference. We are here because of our mutual interest in Antargis. Indeed, exploration of the Antargic continent is a vast and exciting operation."

She paused for a moment, looked around the room scanning all these faces in deep thought. Anna continued:

"If these scientific initiatives are to be a success, we first need to establish some rules. In front of you on the desk, you will find a large binder with several possible scenarios. The aim of this first day is to come to an agreement on one of these scenario's".

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President Duval was struggling to keep himself awake when the conference finally started. With all representatives present, the time had come to pay attention and be serious. The first point, raised by ISTC member @Fleur de Lys, was an agreeable one. With his government forever pushing forwards environmentalism, keeping Antargis as pure as possible would be good not only for his government's reputation, but for the public's perception of him. The Prymontian people seemed to be on board with environmentalism, and pushing the matter at an international meeting would surely work in his favour.

"If I may, I'd also like to thank @Orioni and the EOS for inviting everyone to this wonderful island, and for bringing this topic to the attention of nations across the globe. The United States firmly believe in a pro-environment future not only for our own country, but for the entire world, and that's why we agree with President Mécra that civilising and militarising Antargis should be strictly prohibited."

He paused for a moment, taking a sip of his coffee and allowing his advisor Ralph Lowe to catch up on note taking before continuing. 

"Not to blow my own trumpet, but Prymont is a perfect example of how good this approach can be. We have two states dedicated purely as nature reserves, in Wildenesse and Whitevale. This stance has preserved the natural beauty of these states and allowed wildlife to thrive. We've seen the benefits that this can bring, and while we're not proposing that Antargis should be opened up to tourists, I'm simply saying that it's a tried and tested method and should be the way forwards. The only thing we should be doing on Antargis is scientific research and development. Investigating global warming, studying local wildlife such as penguins, those are the things we should be looking into as opposed to arming the continent."

He sat back in his seat, indicating that he'd finished and turned to his advisor.

"Well said, George," he whispered, finishing up the last few notes before sending them back to the Environment Minister. "Pressing the environmentalism agenda on Antargis is a good idea, and one that I fully support." 

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Boris Herjavec then took the stand, his faithful advisor Igor right beside him.

"The Eurofuhrer has always taken great pride in their environmental policies. We have tight restrictions on emissions and fossil fuels, and our plan is to completely phase out fossil fuels over the next 20 years. Using these environmental policies and regulations, Eurofuhrerian scientists have created plans for the SLAVIA 1, our Antargic base."

p01df1y3.jpg

"As you can see, this will be a massive undertaking. We hope to establish a base in approximately 5 years,  if we can agree on how this terrain will be used. This station will be used for research on climate change, wildlife, and plate tectonics. Once the station is established, it will be open to all allies of the Eurofuhrer. Again, this is way off into the future, but our country can not help but look forward to this bright path."

"Our next demands are much like the others before us, no military action should ever be held on this continent. Antargis is a beacon of light in a world often torn by strife, and our country hopes to turn it into an icy utopia. No economic profit should be made from this continent either, because when countries are racing for resources, it will not end up well. Our country believes Antargis should be a place of peace and learning, not of war and exploration. Thank you."

the-dumbest-argument-for-a-newt-gingrich

:pic: Boris Herjavec at the podium (Courtesy of EBC)

As Boris and Igor sat back down, Boris told Igor, “We may be an outsider now, but we are about to get in.”

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The fourth person to raise their voice was Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve, head of the Sunset Sea Islandian government. As the representative of the most influential nation of the ISTC, Mrs Mauve had to stand up for her allies. What she had heard during the last hour had pleased her very much. Even though she had been suspicious of @The Eurofuhrer's rushed plans to establish an Antargic base, she felt reinforced in her idea that through cooperation and, most of all, diplomacy all hurdles could be surpassed. Now it was her time to speak, her time to do her job.

"I came here with my allies from all over the world to stand with them and this is what I am doing now. The ISTC has created an alliance to further the good of humanity as a whole, transcending the pathetic desires of single nation-states. I can only reinforce what has been stated by my allies, who I like to call friends, before: the @Sunset Sea Islands cannot tolerate the foolish plans of some nations to abuse this natural sanctuary of the Antargic continent for such disgusting reasons like capitalist exploitation or even military use, nor can any other ISTC member state. Just like my friends, @Fleur de Lys and @Prymont have already made our point clear: this frosty paradise is way to pristine to be abused for the good of individuals. Tanks and silos have no place on this frozen continent.

It is the raison d'être of every human being to explore and to research for the betterment of the human species as a whole. Therefore, the only usage of the Antargic continent which can be morally legitimised is scientific research. Studying, learning, researching and doing science whilst preserving the natural paradise which is this southernmost continent will benefit every one of us. Exploitation might make certain individuals rich for the moment, but it will devastate our home planet, affecting all of us and destroying this world for the generations our children and their children.

The @Sunset Sea Islands summarize: commercial, industrial or military use of the Antargic continent is unacceptable, intolerable and undebatable. What we must do is give it our all to protect the untouched environment which human activity on this planet endangers and learn from it.

Nevertheless, I can see that all of us share a common trait: we care about this area in the southernmost corner of our world deeply. This deep, emotional connection is what made us come here to discuss and it will be the thing to make us overcome this dispute.

The superpowers of our world, which have formed the mighty alliance that is EOS, the upcoming global players which have recently put away their differences to form the ISTC and independent nations such as @The Eurofuhrer all want to protect Antargis, they want to study it and they want to learn from it.

Therefore, the @Sunset Sea Islands hereby make their proposal:

  • The continent of Antargis shall be protected from any territorial claims of any nation. Any such claims shall be struck null and void.
  • And independent entity shall be formed to coordinate the activities on the continent of Antargis. It shall decide whether an action on the continent is lawful or needs to be outlawed.
  • The construction of research bases on the continent of Antargis shall be possible for every nation, may they be a member of an alliance or a sovereign nation. Just as any activity, those bases need to be permitted by the then formed administrative entity.
  • Around any research base, a region with a radius of 10km per nation participating in this base shall be put under the administration of these nations.
  • All nations conducting activities on the continent of Antargis share a common duty to protect the continent from environmental or other harm. Nations, which wish to be a part of the Antarctican community need to work together to uphold the integrity of the continent. Not cooperating shall be met with severe consequences.

By upholding these rules all of us will be able to work together for the betterment of all of us. No matter which nation you represent or where your comrades in the research bases will come from, this will benefit all of us. Let the continent of Antargis become a place of wisdom, research and cooperation and not of exploitation and fighting. The alliance of EOS, the ISTC and independent nations such as @The Eurofuhrer shall build their bases and work towards a bright future for mankind.

Now, you might think that believing this scale of international cooperation is naive, but that simply is not true. We do, in fact, have no other choice but to cooperate on the Antargican continent. And if you still don't believe that this cooperation is possible, look at it from this perspective:

If nations such as @Fleur de Lys@Prymont@Magnaeus and the @Sunset Sea Islands can work together even though they are separated by continents and incredible distances, why shouldn't we be able to cooperate? We are the only ones who can truly influence the actions of millions of people. The power to shape the future of our beautiful world lies in our hands. We do not have the opportunity to use this power. We have the duty to do so."

Prime Minister Dr Lydia Mauve sat down. She had to hide the fact that she was incredibly nervous and slightly out of breath. Mrs Mauve had become way more passionate about this topic than she intended to. Nevertheless, she did not regret a single word she said. This might have been the most passionate she has ever been during her career and maybe this speech would have been the most impactful of all speeches she would ever hold.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Representative Anna Hackney was looking forward to getting to know these new delegates from the ISTC. She had received an early briefing from the council about ongoing negotiations with @Fleur de Lys: something about a deal having been made in Lyrie, and how the Orioni Empire was to remain on friendly terms with the Lysians.

When it was Anna's turn to speak again, she supported the Lysian proposals:

"As was stated so eloquently by monsieur Mécra of Fleur de Lys, and mister Herjavec from @The Eurofuhrer we agree on the position to keep the Antargic continent from any commercial or military exploitation. We are fervently against the militarization of this geographical region, and will oppose any and all nations who insist on doing this."

While finishing this last sentence, Mrs Hackney had only just kept herself from slamming a clenched fist on the table.

"I do believe we all agree on the merits of peaceful and scientific exploration. Antargis will help us investigate the reasons for global warming. Speaking for the Orioni Empire, we believe it is a major priority to better understand how climate change is affecting the world we live in. We are thankful that this principle is clearly shared as well by the United States of @Prymont, the Republic of Eurofuhrer and Kingdom of @Sunset Sea Islands."

Many of the delegates present here today seemed to stress the importance of environmentalism. Some governments were clearly ahead of the curve, while others were starting off a major change in their economies. Anna wondered if it would be possible for Orioni to follow the example of president Roko Teodosic of Eurofuhrer to phase out fossil fuels by the year 2037. Surely the all-important shipping industry would voice a major protest.  What were they supposed to do: return to the Age of Sail, and become dependent again of the unreliable wind? No, this sensitive topic would have to wait for another time.

Much more interesting and exciting was the plan by Mr Herjavec, which proposed the creation of the SLAVIA 1 base on Antargis. Clearly, the Eurofuhrerians were much further ahead than had been anticipated. The image they showed seemed to indicate a station not too far from the coast. Anna made a note of it to further investigate this.

All of these thoughts and ideas seemed to be captured by the framework proposed by the@Sunset Sea Islands.

"We would like to thank Prime Minister Mauve for her bold and uncompromising proposal. She has perfectly captured our shared ideals, and turned them into a clear plan which everyone can follow. Of course, while we may agree on these broad outlines, there are some specific details that need to be negotiated. For instance: the limitation of operating a base within a radius of just 10 kilometres would severely limit the research missions that can be undertaken. As an alternative, the EOS nations would like to support the idea of creating specific zones for each nation to operate in. We see the team of Mr Mécra has already proposed a solution similar to this. These zones are not to be perceived as territorial claims, rather they would make it clear which nation is responsible for a specific 'slice' of Antargis. For example in the case of search-and-rescue missions."

Mrs Hackney sat down again. This last point was most important. She knew that if the amendment was accepted, the imperial council would be very pleased. And pleasing the council was equally important if a person wanted to increase their career prospects within the Orioni government. Anna wasn't going to work on EOS island forever. She had found an opportunity for promotion.

(OOC: @Girkmand @Magnaeus you are welcome to weigh in with your own comments and proposals.)

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Adelina had been taking notes as the other envoys had been speaking. Reading the room, she was at a loss on the best way to proceed. It was clear that the majority of nations were quickly moving to block the Antargic from any commercial speculation in perpetuity. She knew this would not play well when reporting back to State. If she were not careful, she knew that Myriandrus would walk away from the treaty. It had been challenging enough to achieve ratification of the EOS agreement on Antargis. She would need to be cautious, or else she would lose the other delegation's willingness to hear her concerns.

Representative Valyrissi rose to address the conference, clearing her throat. "I would first like to take the opportunity to thank, once again, Representative Hackney and her government from the Beautiful @Orioni Empire for calling all of us together for this conference. Listening to you all, it is clear that we have much common ground upon which we can build as we work toward achieving a realistic and achievable framework for the exploration and protection of the Antargic continent. We have a unique chance to move forward together in this most noble of endeavors."

"It warms my heart that those assembled here today all share the Consortium's believe that militarization of Antargica would be detrimental to the continued well-being and prosperity of the world. Military personnel should only be deployed to the Antarctic in a support and security role for the scientific expeditions operating on the continent. Military resources should only be used for their unique logistical capabilities and to protect scientists as they travel to and from the continent."

"I could not agree more with Prime Minister Mauve that it is of the utmost importance that the environment of the Antargic be preserved. It would be calamitous if our activities there were detrimental. That said, I believe that we simply do not understand enough about the Antarctic to truly know at this time how much human activities will impact the region. Until we have a more complete picture, we must be careful with how quickly we proceed. A moratorium on commercial activity would be wise as we conduct our initial research, but this issue should be revisited once we have a greater understanding of the ecology of the Antargic and how human progress and environmental stewardship might best coexist."

"We also must clarify how the provisions of any agreement we reach here today will be enforced. It is all well and good that we agree, but how will the actions of non-signatories be handled? However unlikely due to the remoteness of the continent, we must also consider actions undertaken by non-state actors. There is currently no international authority that currently exists that would be able to arbitrate these disputes. Any non-signatory could do whatsoever they wish to the Antargic. This is what we must seek to prevent."

"Finally, I agree with my colleague from Orioni that zones of control might be the best way forward in solving the question of enforcement. If any situation arises where the nation responsible for that zone feels they need the support of others, other signatories can become involved as has been outlines in the proposal from @Fleur de Lys."

"It is my greatest hope that we can address these solutions together, and progress together in greater understanding of this most unique region. Thank you."

With that, Adelina took her seat.

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President George Duval had been able to sit back for a while and formulate his next response while the others were putting forward their points. It satisfied him greatly to see that everyone was generally in agreement that Antargis should remain as a scientific research haven and nothing more. After Adelina of Miiros had taken her seat, George waited a moment or two to briefly discuss with his advisor before jumping up.

"I'd like to continue by thanking each and every one of you for your input into this important global matter. It's relieving to hear that we all have the same general idea of how to press on with Antargis, in the sense that it should remain as a place for scientific research and nothing more. Once again, I'd like to take a moment to reiterate that the United States of Prymont firmly believes that there should be absolutely no commercial or military activity on the continent, save for military protection if necessary. Storing nuclear weapons and developing military technologies, for example, should be strictly prohibited.

"I find the suggestion from our friend at @Miiros very interesting. Enacting a moratorium on commercial activity immediately is the way forward, undoubtedly, but reviewing it down the line is a perfectly reasonable suggestion. After taking this into consideration, Prymont believes that after a certain amount of time has passed, a debate on the future commercial prospects of Antargis should be considered. For example, aerial tours of the continent could be possible, with profits being directed back into the scientific research of Antargis. If a nation is struggling for funding, offering tours, in which the plane does not touch down, only flies over, could be a possibility. With the United States already being a snowy country, we've experienced the benefits that tourism of the colder regions can bring. Geomagnetic phenomena such as the southern lights could also boost interest levels and, once again, fund scientific progress. 

"I'd also like to thank our friends at @Fleur de Lys for their contribution in a first draft of the treaty. After briefly reviewing it, I find it a very solid foundation and particularly agree with section 05, detailing twenty four individual zones that correspond with timezones for nations to oversee. The suggestion brought to us by Prime Minister Mauve of the @Sunset Sea Islands in that a zone of just ten kilometres is reasonable, but ultimately disappointing, and a definitive slice to oversee would be more appropriate for the conservation and safeguarding of Antargis. @The Eurofuhrer's SLAVIA 1 base is certainly an interesting concept, and one that we can all take inspiration from.

"Returning to another point that Ms Valyrissi raised, in regards to the protection of Antargis against non-signatories, I believe it's vital that we all come to an agreement. I would like to propose that signatories should seek to promote neutrality and political friendship and cooperation in regards to Antargis. If matters need to be escalated, the signatories of the treaty should come together to protect Antargis at all costs to preserve its natural environmental beauty. Allowing non-signatories, or signatories for that matter, to perform harmful acts on the landmass is simply unacceptable.

"Finally, I'd like to offer all attendees the chance to train scientists and related Antargis personnel in the Paranoff Moutain Range in Prymont. At times, it can be a cold, harsh hell of a place, and I believe there is no better location to train people than in Prymont. Our own military regularly undergoes extreme climate training in the northern districts, where temperatures can reach incredible lows, and opening up this section of our country for training purposes and as a token of friendship and cooperation is something I believe can further strengthen our relations."

President Duval returned to his seat, taking a large gulp of his diminishing coffee. Offering these nations the chance to train in Prymont hadn't been previously planned, but he hoped that it'd allow them to see his country in a brighter light and to open the door for future diplomatic relations.

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  • 5 weeks later...

(OOC: This slipped my attention. Time to catch up and settle this discussion. No-one likes loose ends.)

And with that last speech by president George Duval, all the delegates had made their statement. Aides were put to work gather all statements and come up with a working proposal. A draft treaty that everyone could agree one. The proposal from ISTC-members @Sunset Sea Islands and @Fleur de Lys was already very complete and would serve as an excellent basis. While the bureaucrats worked on hammering out the finer details of the agreement, the political leaders were getting ready for some networking. There were a few hours to get to know one another better. For some, this was their first encounter on the international scene. Mrs Hackney was delighted to meet so many new faces. These encounters will surely add some interesting details to expanding the diplomatic profiles on each person. The calm and professional manner of Mr Boris Herjavec from @The Eurofuhrer had left a positive impression. There was also the warm reunion with representative Adelina Valyrissi from the @Miirosi Consortium.

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5g1SZYRl.jpg

After a brief withdrawal from the main conference, the delegates returned to the conference room. Everyone took their previous seat. They had a pleasant discussion after the latest musical sensation coming out of @Variota. Behind the scenes, a tireless army of bureaucrats worked to update the agreement to include all major talking points. A final version was beginning to form. Mrs Hackney re-opened the discussion.

"Esteemed delegates. We are happy to see this treaty conference moving forward at such a constructive pace. We applaud the ISTC-delegates from @Fleur de Lys and @Sunset Sea Islands for their extensive preparations. Regarding this document, there are some elements we would like to clarify, namely:

  • Article 1 on Guarantees from Nations mentions holding this treaty "above their own national laws and national interests." We would like to have a better understanding of this aspect, before accepting it over our national laws.
  • Article 5 on Zone Management mentions "Those zones Responsibles shall be defined and appointed during the first conference". We will allow time for discussing and deciding these zones. We recommend that each delegation prepares their arguments.
  • Article 7 on the Construction of Scientific Stations mentions describes them as having the minimal human presence required, maximal automatisation and lowest possible environmental impact". This leaves room for misunderstanding, since these standards are open for interpretation.

"Other than these three comments, we have no further comments. If this conference can resolve and clarify the aforementioned elements, it is our belief that the treaty can move forward into the signatory stage." Mrs Hackney had made her amendments heard.

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  • 2 weeks later...

(OOC: Another two weeks went by. Forgive me but I'm pushing forward with this.)

At first delegate Anna Hackney was surprised by the silence. But it seemed that a general consensus had already been reached. She turned to face the @Fleur de Lysian Ambassador, Julie Tanaux, and gave an acknowledging nod and smile in her direction. Inside, she was boiling with enthusiasm. This was just the success story she needed.

"Well then," Anna said while speaking into the microphone again, "If there are no further comments or remarks, I do believe we can consider this matter final and settled. If you'll allow my candour, this is both a surprise and delight. The national delegates gathered here today all agree on accepting and upholding this final document the ARTHA-TRAHA agreement."

"If you would like to follow me, ladies and gentlemen," Anna continued, "It would be an opportune moment to finish this historic first conference with a signing ceremony." Delegate Hackney gestured to one of her aides, who stood up and walked towards the assembly doorway. The other staff re-opened the double doors towards the next room. While all of this was going on, she tapped another aide to confirm the good news with Councillor Pipkin. He would surely have been listening in on the conversation. But it is a sign of strong confidence to toot one's own horn during such an achievement.

signing-ceremony.jpg

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