Diplomatic recognition in international law is a unilateral political act with domestic and international legal consequences whereby a state acknowledges an act or status of another state or government in control of a state (may be also a recognized state). Recognition can be reaccorded either de facto or de jure. Recognition can be a declaration to that effect by the recognizing government, or an act of recognition such as entering into a treaty with the other state. A vote by a country in the United Nations in favour of the membership of another country is an implicit recognition of that country by the country so voting, as only states may be members of the UN.
The non-recognition of particular acts of a state does not normally affect the recognition of the state itself. For example, the international rejection of the occupation of particular territory by a recognised state does not imply non-recognition of the state itself, nor a rejection of a change of government by illegal means.
Diplomatic recognition must be distinguished from formal recognition of states or their governments. The fact that states do not maintain bilateral diplomatic relations does not mean that they do not recognize or treat one another as states. A state is not required to accord formal bilateral recognition to any other state, and some have a general policy of not doing so, considering that a vote for its membership of an international organisation restricted to states, such as the United Nations, is proof of recognition.
Some consider that a state has a responsibility not to recognize as a state any entity that has attained the qualifications for statehood by a violation of basic principles of the UN Charter: the UN Security Council has in several instances (Resolution 216 (1965) and Resolution 217 (1965), concerning Rhodesia; Resolution 541 (1983), concerning Northern Cyprus; and Resolution 787 (1992), concerning the Republika Srpska) issued Chapter VII resolutions (binding in international law) that denied their statehood and precluded recognition. In the 2010 International Court of Justice advisory opinion on Kosovo's declaration of independence, the ICJ ruled that "general international law contains no applicable prohibition of declarations of independence." The Court carefully noted "that in all of those instances the Security Council was making a determination as regards the concrete situation existing at the time that those declarations of independence were made; the illegality attached to the declarations of independence thus stemmed not from the unilateral character of these declarations as such, but from the fact that they were, or would have been, connected with the unlawful use of force or other egregious violations of norms of general international law, in particular those of a peremptory character (jus cogens). In the context of Kosovo, the Security Council has never taken this position. The exceptional character of the resolutions enumerated above appears to the Court to confirm that no general prohibition against unilateral declarations of independence may be inferred from the practice of the Security Council."
States can exercise their recognition powers either explicitly or implicitly. The recognition of a government implies recognition of the state it governs, but even countries which have a policy of formally recognising states may not have a policy of doing the same regarding governments.
De facto recognition of states, rather than de jure, is rare. De jure recognition is stronger, while de facto recognition is more tentative and recognizes only that a government exercises control over a territory. An example of the difference is when the United Kingdom recognized the Soviet state de facto in 1921, but de jure only in 1924. Another example is the state of Israel in 1948, whose government was immediately recognized de facto by the United States and three days later by Soviet de jure recognition. Also, the Republic of China, commonly known as "Taiwan", is generally recognized as de facto independent and sovereign, but is not universally recognized as de jure independent due to the complex political status of Taiwan related to the United Nation's withdrawal of recognition in favor of the People's Republic of China in 1971.
Renewing recognition of a government is not necessary when it changes in a normal, constitutional way (such as an election or referendum), but is necessary in the case of a coup d'etat or revolution. Recognition of a new government by other states can be important for its long-term survival. For instance, the Taliban government of the Islamic State of Afghanistan, which lasted from 1996 to 2001, was recognized by only Pakistan, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia, while far more had recognized the government of ousted President Burhanuddin Rabbani. The disputed territory of Jammu and Kashmir of the Republic of India is not recognized by either Pakistan or the People's Republic of China.
Recognition can be implied by other acts, such as the visit of the head of state, or the signing of a bilateral treaty. If implicit recognition is possible, a state may feel the need to explicitly proclaim that its acts do not constitute diplomatic recognition, like when the United States commenced its dialogue with the Palestine Liberation Organization in 1988.
A state may withdraw diplomatic recognition of another state, or simply refuse to deal with that other country, after withdrawing from all diplomatic relations with that country, such as embassies and consulates, and requiring the other country to do the same. The state will appoint a protecting power to represent its interests in the other state.
The doctrine of non-recognition of illegal or immoral situations, like territorial gains achieved by force, is called the Stimson Doctrine, and has become more important since the Second World War, especially in the United Nations where it is a method of ensuring compliance with international law – for instance, in the case of Rhodesia in 1965. Withdrawal of recognition of a government is a more severe act of disapproval than the breaking of diplomatic relations.
Besides recognizing other states, states also can recognize the governments of states. This can be problematic particularly when a new government comes to power by illegal means, such as a coup d'état, or when an existing government stays in power by fixing an election. States once formally recognized both the government of a state and the state itself, but many no longer follow that practice, even though, if diplomatic relations are to be maintained, it is necessary that there be a government with which to engage in diplomatic relations. Countries such as the United States answer queries over the recognition of governments with the statement: "The question of recognition does not arise: we are conducting our relations with the new government."
Several of the world's geo-political entities lack general international recognition, but wish to be recognized as sovereign states. The degree of de facto control these entities exert over the territories they claim varies.
Most are subnational regions with an ethnic or national identity of their own that have separated from the original parent state. Such states are commonly referred to as "break-away" states. Some of these entities are in effect internally self-governing protectorates that enjoy military protection and informal diplomatic representation abroad through another state to prevent forced reincorporation into their original states.
Note that the word "control" in this list refers to control over the area occupied, not occupation of the area claimed. Unrecognized countries may have either full control over their occupied territory (such as Taiwan), or only partial control (such as Western Sahara). In the former, the de jure governments have little or no influence in the areas they claim to rule, whereas in the latter they have varying degrees of control, and may provide essential services to people living in the areas.
Formal recognition of belligerency, which is rare today, signifies that the parties to the civil war or other internal conflict "are entitled to excise belligerent rights, thus accepting that the rebel group possesses sufficient international personality to support the position of such rights and duties." Extension of the rights of belligerency is usually done by other states, rather than by the government fighting the rebel group. (A 1907 report by William E. Fuller for the Spanish Treaty Claims Commission noted that "A parent state never formally recognizes the insurgents as belligerents, although it may in fact treat them as such by carrying on war against them in accordance with the rules and usages of international warfare.")
Examples of recognition of belligerent status include:
Croatia held an independence referendum on 19 May 1991, following the Croatian parliamentary elections of 1990 and the rise of ethnic tensions that led to the breakup of Yugoslavia. With 83 percent turnout, voters approved the referendum, with 93 percent in favor of independence. Subsequently, Croatia declared independence and the dissolution of its association with Yugoslavia on 25 June 1991, but it introduced a three-month moratorium on the decision when urged to do so by the European Community and the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe through the Brioni Agreement. The war in Croatia escalated during the moratorium, and on 8 October 1991, the Croatian Parliament severed all remaining ties with Yugoslavia. In 1992, the countries of the European Economic Community granted Croatia diplomatic recognition and Croatia was admitted to the United Nations.Burkina Faso–Taiwan relations
Burkina Faso–Taiwan relations referred to the historical relationship between the Republic of China (Taiwan) and Burkina Faso. Taiwan had an embassy in Ouagadougou, and Burkina Faso had an embassy in Taipei. The last ambassador of Burkina Faso to Taiwan, appointed in August 2017, was Aminata Sana Congo.Corporative federalism
Corporative federalism is a system of federalism not based on the common federalist idea of relative land area or nearest spheres of influence for governance, but on fiduciary jurisdiction to corporate personhood in which groups that are considered incorporated members of their own prerogative structure by willed agreement can delegate their individual effective legislature within the overall government.
The Austro-Hungarian Empire had a version of corporative federalism and gave its number of different ethnicities their own individual rights within their own assemblies instead of by relation to the territory of the empire.Part of corporative federalism's philosophical underpinnings as a form of jurisdiction rests within the auspices of demographics as polities as much as they are constituencies of a federative structure. Theories adding philosophic backing to its own conceptualizations from such ideas as diplomatic recognition and the sovereign state's right to exist as if it extended beyond territorial nation-state in an international structure, to an intranational structure of the voluntary association of those with similar social world views being codified legal frameworks to themselves, within their own sphere of interaction, under a federal government of a particular nation state and relying on infrastructural power for implementation.Diplomatic service
Diplomatic service is the body of diplomats and foreign policy officers maintained by the government of a country to communicate with the governments of other countries. Diplomatic personnel enjoy diplomatic immunity when they are accredited to other countries. Diplomatic services are often part of the larger civil service and sometimes a constituent part of the foreign ministry.
Some intergovernmental organizations, such as the European Union, and some international non-state organizations, such as the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, may also retain diplomatic services in other jurisdictions. For non-state organizations, the reciprocation of diplomatic recognition by other jurisdictions is difficult, as diplomacy tends to establish the concept of recognition upon an assumed sovereignty over geographical territory; the SMOM, in this case, receives diplomats at its headquarters in Rome, as all permanent missions to the SMOM are jointly accredited as permanent missions to the Holy See. In relation, many more non-state international organizations, such as the IFRC/ICRC, maintain permanent non-voting observer status to intergovernmental bodies such as the United Nations General Assembly, appointing individual representatives to the observer office.Eugenio Pacelli's 1936 visit to the United States
Eugenio Pacelli (the future Pope Pius XII) visited the United States for two weeks in October–November 1936 as Cardinal Secretary of State and Camerlengo of the Holy Roman Church. At the time, Pacelli was the highest ranking Catholic official ever to visit the US. Although he did not visit the US as Pope, he was the first Pope who visited the US at any time in his life.
Pacelli met with President Franklin D. Roosevelt, investigated Roosevelt's radio critic Rev. Charles Coughlin, and visited New York City, Washington, D.C., Boston, Saint Paul, MN, and Chicago. The media nicknamed Pacelli "The Flying Cardinal" due to his five-day coast-to-coast air tour. Pacelli planned to silence Coughlin for Roosevelt in exchange for his support against Communism and, more importantly, in an attempt to achieve diplomatic recognition of the sovereignty of Vatican City.Monsignor Giuseppe Pizzardo, the Secretary of Extraordinary Affairs, served as acting Secretary of State during Pacelli's absence. Pope Pius XI also cut short his vacation at Castel Gandolfo to return to the Vatican during Pacelli's absence.Foreign relations of Seychelles
Seychelles follows a policy of what it describes as "positive" nonalignment and strongly supports the principle of reduced superpower presence in the Indian Ocean. The Seychelles government is one of the proponents of the Indian Ocean zone of peace concept and it has promoted an end to the United States presence on Diego Garcia. The country has adopted a pragmatic policy, however, and serves as an important rest and recreation stop for US ships serving in the Persian Gulf and Indian Ocean. Seychelles' foreign policy position has placed it generally toward the left of the spectrum within the Non-Aligned Movement. Russia, the United Kingdom, France, India, the People's Republic of China, Libya and Cuba maintain embassies in Victoria.
The government of the Seychelles withdrew diplomatic recognition of the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic on March 17, 2008, according to an official government source.Haiti indemnity controversy
The Haiti indemnity controversy culminated in an agreement by Haiti to a 1825 gold demand by France for a FR₣150 million indemnity (later reduced to FR₣90 million in 1838, comparable to US$40 billion as of 2010 with consideration to inflation) to be paid by the Republic of Haiti in claims over property lost through the Haitian Revolution in return for diplomatic recognition. The gold demand was delivered to the country by 12 French warships armed with 528 cannons. Diplomatic recognition by France of Haiti came in 1825, twenty-one years after Haiti's declaration of independence in 1804. The payment of an indemnity to the former French plantation owners was originally suggested by Haitian president Pétion in 1814 as a way to deter a possible French attack on his country.Independence Day (Hawaii)
Hawaiian Independence Day (Hawaiian: Lā Kūʻokoʻa) was a former national holiday celebrated on November 28 during the Kingdom of Hawaii, which commemorated the signing of Anglo-Franco Proclamation, the official diplomatic recognition of the independence and sovereignty of the kingdom by Great Britain and France. It is still celebrated today by proponents of the Hawaiian sovereignty movement.International recognition of Bangladesh
The Bangladesh Liberation War (Bengali: মুক্তিযুদ্ধ Muktijuddho) was a revolutionary independence war in South Asia during 1971 which established the republic of Bangladesh. The war pitted East Pakistan against West Pakistan, and lasted over a duration of nine months. It witnessed large-scale atrocities, the exodus of 10 million refugees and the displacement of 30 million people.The war broke out on 26 March 1971, when the Pakistani Army launched a military operation called Operation Searchlight against Bengali civilians, students, intelligentsia and armed personnel, who were demanding that the Pakistani military junta accept the results of the 1970 first democratic elections of Pakistan, which were won by an eastern party, or to allow separation between East and West Pakistan. Bengali politicians and army officers announced the declaration of Bangladesh's independence in response to Operation Searchlight. Bengali military, paramilitary and civilians formed the Mukti Bahini (Bengali: মুক্তি বাহিনী "Liberation Army"), which engaged in guerrilla warfare against Pakistani forces. The Pakistan Army, in collusion with religious extremist militias (the Razakars, Al-Badr and Al-Shams), engaged in the systematic genocide and atrocities of Bengali civilians, particularly nationalists, intellectuals, youth and religious minorities. Bangladesh government-in-exile was set up in the city of Calcutta (now Kolkata) in the Indian State of West Bengal.
India entered the war on 3 December 1971, after Pakistan launched pre-emptive air strikes on northern India. Overwhelmed by two war fronts, Pakistani defences soon collapsed. On 16 December, the Allied Forces of Bangladesh and India defeated Pakistan in the east. The subsequent surrender resulted in the largest number of prisoners-of-war since World War II.International recognition of Israel
The international recognition of Israel refers to the diplomatic recognition of the State of Israel, which was established by the Israeli Declaration of Independence on 14 May 1948. Israel's sovereignty is disputed by some countries due to the Arab–Israeli conflict. As of December 2018, 163 of the 193 UN member states recognize Israel.International recognition of Transnistria
International recognition of Transnistria (also known as Pridnestrovie) – a disputed region in Eastern Europe located between Moldova and Ukraine – is controversial. Although Transnistria declared independence in 1990, no United Nations member recognises its sovereignty and the region is considered by the UN to be part of Moldova. As of 2011, only Abkhazia, the Republic of Artsakh and South Ossetia recognise its independence, all themselves states with limited recognition. Despite not officially recognizing Transnistria's independence, Russia has established a consulate in the disputed territory.Japan–Ukraine relations
Japanese-Ukrainian relations are formal diplomatic relations between Japan and Ukraine. Japan extended diplomatic recognition to the Ukrainian state on December 28, 1991, immediately after the breakup of the Soviet Union and full diplomatic relations were established on January 26, 1992.
Ukraine maintains an embassy in Tokyo, and Japan maintains an embassy in Kiev.Kingdom of Wallachia
The Kingdom of Wallachia (Czech: Valašské Kralovství), named after the region of Moravian Wallachia, is a tongue-in-cheek micronation that was founded in 1997 by the photographer Tomáš Harabiš as an "elaborate practical joke". The location is in the northeast corner of the Czech Republic, 230 miles from Prague. Since foundation a reported 80,000 Czech citizens have acquired "Wallachian Passports".After the official proclamation of the Wallachian kingdom in 1997, actor Bolek Polívka was enthroned as King Boleslav I the Gracious with his coronation occurring at a lavish ceremony in 2000. The "Government" led by Tomáš Harabiš established state institutions and issued passports to around 80,000 officially Czech citizens. A new currency, the Jurovalsar, was launched which was pegged to the euro at a rate of 1:1. Enthusiastic attempts to forge official ties with other countries have so far proved disappointing and the Kingdom of Wallachia enjoys no formal diplomatic recognition.List of ambassadors of the Dominican Republic to China
The Dominican ambassador in Beijing is the official representative of the government in Santo Domingo to the government in Beijing.
In July 2004, Taiwan was assured by the Dominican Republic that it would not switch its diplomatic recognition from Taipei to Beijing, even though it had established business ties with China.
When Leonel Fernández was president-elect, he told Taiwan's ambassador that the new government will continue to recognize Taiwan.
China opened a commercial liaison office in the Dominican Republic, but the long-standing friendship between Taiwan and the Dominican Republic will remain unchanged, but the D.R. will have commerciald ties with China.Outline of Northern Cyprus
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to Northern Cyprus:
Northern Cyprus – de facto independent republic on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus. Officially it is the northern territory of the Republic of Cyprus. The territory includes the Kokkina exclave, a pene-enclave "of" the rest of Cyprus, partly surrounded by sea.
The TRNC declared independence in 1983, nine years after a Greek Cypriot coup attempting to annex the island to Greece triggered an invasion by Turkey. It has received diplomatic recognition only from Turkey, on which it is dependent for economic, political and military support. The rest of the international community, including the United Nations and European Union, recognises the sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus over the whole island.Political status
In international law three categories of Political status are usually recognized:
Independent countries e.g.: France, Canada
Internal independent countries which are under the protection of another country in matters of defense and foreign affairs, e.g.: Netherlands Antilles, the Faroe Islands, British Virgin Islands etc.
Colonies and other dependent political units e.g. Puerto Rico.There are, furthermore, several unrecognized countries and independence, secessionist, autonomy and nationalist movements throughout the world. See list of unrecognized countries.Trent Affair
The Trent Affair was a diplomatic incident in 1861 during the American Civil War that threatened a war between the United States and the United Kingdom. The U.S. Navy illegally captured two Confederate diplomats from a British ship; the UK protested vigorously. The United States ended the incident by releasing the diplomats.
On November 8, 1861, the USS San Jacinto, commanded by Union Captain Charles Wilkes, intercepted the British mail packet RMS Trent and removed, as contraband of war, two Confederate diplomats: James Murray Mason and John Slidell. The envoys were bound for Britain and France to press the Confederacy's case for diplomatic recognition and to lobby for possible financial and military support.
Public reaction in the United States was to celebrate the capture and rally against Britain, threatening war. In the Confederate States, the hope was that the incident would lead to a permanent rupture in Anglo-American relations and possibly even war or at least diplomatic recognition by Britain. Confederates realized their independence potentially depended on intervention by Britain and France. In Britain, the public disapproved of this violation of neutral rights and insult to their national honor. The British government demanded an apology and the release of the prisoners and took steps to strengthen its military forces in Canada and the Atlantic.
President Abraham Lincoln and his top advisors did not want to risk war with Britain over this issue. After several tense weeks, the crisis was resolved when the Lincoln administration released the envoys and disavowed Captain Wilkes's actions, though without a formal apology. Mason and Slidell resumed their voyage to Britain but failed in their goal of achieving diplomatic recognition.United Nations Preventive Deployment Force
The United Nations Preventive Deployment Force (UNPREDEP) was established on 31 March 1995 in Security Council Resolution 983 to replace the United Nations Protection Force (UNPROFOR) in the Republic of Macedonia. The mandate of UNPREDEP remained essentially the same: to monitor and report any developments in the border areas which could undermine confidence and stability in the country and threaten its territory. It is widely considered to be an instance of a successful deployment of UN peacekeeping forces in the prevention of conflict and violence against civilians. The operation was shut down on 28 February 1999, after its last extension in Resolution 1186 when China vetoed its renewal in 1999 following Macedonia's diplomatic recognition of Taiwan.Unrecognized state
An unrecognized state may be:
A state currently not recognized by one given state (but possibly by others), see List of states with limited recognition
A proclaimed state currently not recognized by any other state, without de facto control over its claimed territory, see
Lists of active separatist movements
Government in exile
List of historical unrecognized states
List of historical separatist movements