Federation

A federation (also known as a federal state) is a political entity characterized by a union of partially self-governing provinces, states, or other regions under a central federal government (federalism). In a federation, the self-governing status of the component states, as well as the division of power between them and the central government, is typically constitutionally entrenched and may not be altered by a unilateral decision of either party, the states or the federal political body. Alternatively, federation is a form of government in which sovereign power is formally divided between a central authority and a number of constituent regions so that each region retains some degree of control over its internal affairs. It is often argued that federal states where the central government has the constitutional authority to suspend a constituent state's government by invoking gross mismanagement or civil unrest, or to adopt national legislation that overrides or infringe on the constituent states' powers by invoking the central government's constitutional authority to ensure "peace and good government" or to implement obligations contracted under an international treaty, are not truly federal states.

The governmental or constitutional structure found in a federation is considered to be federalist, or to be an example of federalism. It can be considered the opposite of another system, the unitary state. France, for example, has been unitary for multiple centuries. Austria and its Bundesländer was a unitary state with administrative divisions that became federated through the implementation of the Austrian Constitution following the 1918 collapse of Austria-Hungary. Germany, with its 16 states, or Bundesländer, is an example of a federation. Federations are often multiethnic and cover a large area of territory (such as Russia, the United States, Canada, India, or Brazil), but neither is necessarily the case (such as Saint Kitts and Nevis).

Several ancient chiefdoms and kingdoms, such as the 4th-century BCE League of Corinth, Noricum in Central Europe, and the Haudenosaunee Confederation in pre-Columbian North America, could be described as federations or confederations. The Old Swiss Confederacy was an early example of formal non-unitary statehood.

Several colonies and dominions in the New World consisted of autonomous provinces, transformed to federal states upon independence such as the United States, and various countries in Latin America (see Spanish American wars of independence). Some of the New World federations failed; the Federal Republic of Central America broke up into independent states less than 20 years after its founding. Others, such as Argentina and Mexico, have shifted between federal, confederal, and unitary systems, before settling into federalism. Brazil became a federation only after the fall of the monarchy, and Venezuela became a federation after the Federal War. Australia and Canada are also federations.

Germany is another nation-state that has switched between confederal, federal and unitary rules, since the German Confederation was founded in 1815. The North German Confederation, the succeeding German Empire and the Weimar Republic were federations.

Founded in 1922, the Soviet Union was formally a federation of Soviet republics, autonomous republics and other federal subjects, though in practice highly centralized under the government of the Soviet Union. The Russian Federation has inherited a similar system.

Nigeria, Pakistan, India and Malaysia (then Federation of Malaya) became federations on or shortly before becoming independent from the British Empire.

In some recent cases, federations have been instituted as a measure to handle ethnic conflict within a state, such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Iraq since 2005.

With the United States Constitution having become effective on 4 March 1789, the United States is the oldest surviving federation. On the other end of the timeline is Nepal, which became the newest federation after its constitution went into effect on 20 September 2015.

Map of unitary and federal states
  Federal states
  No government
The pathway of regional integration or separation
The pathway of regional integration or separation

Federations and other forms of state

Map of Argentina with provinces names en
A map of Argentina, showing its twenty-three constituent provinces and the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires
Mapa Mexico 2010
A map of the United Mexican States (Mexico), showing its thirty-one constituent states and Mexico City
Map of USA with state names
A map of the United States of America showing its fifty constituent states and the Federal District
India-map-en
A map showing India's 29 states and 7 Union territories including the National Capital Territory of Delhi

Federations

The component states are in some sense sovereign, insofar as certain powers are reserved to them that may not be exercised by the central government. However, a federation is more than a mere loose alliance of independent states. The component states of a federation usually possess no powers in relation to foreign policy and so enjoy no independent status under international law. However, German Länder have that power,[1] which is beginning to be exercised on a European level.

Some federations are called asymmetric because some states have more autonomy than others. An example of such a federation is Malaysia, in which Sarawak and Sabah agreed to form the federation on different terms and conditions from the states of Peninsular Malaysia.

A federation often emerges from an initial agreement between a number of separate states. The purpose can be the will to solve mutual problems and to provide for mutual defense or to create a nation-state for an ethnicity spread over several states. The former was the case with the United States and Switzerland. However, as the histories of countries and nations vary, the federalist system of a state can be quite different from these models. Australia, for instance, is unique in that it came into existence as a nation by the democratic vote of the citizens of each state, who voted "yes" in referendums to adopt the Australian Constitution. Brazil, on the other hand, has experienced both the federal and the unitary state during its history. Some present day states of the Brazilian federation retain borders set during the Portuguese colonization (before the very existence of the Brazilian state), whereas the latest state, Tocantins, was created by the 1988 Constitution for chiefly administrative reasons.

Seven of the top eight largest countries by area are governed as federations.

Unitary states

A unitary state is sometimes one with only a single, centralised, national tier of government. However, unitary states often also include one or more self-governing regions. The difference between a federation and this kind of unitary state is that in a unitary state the autonomous status of self-governing regions exists by the sufferance of the central government, and may be unilaterally revoked. While it is common for a federation to be brought into being by agreement between a number of formally independent states, in a unitary state self-governing regions are often created through a process of devolution, where a formerly centralised state agrees to grant autonomy to a region that was previously entirely subordinate. Thus federations are often established voluntarily from 'below' whereas devolution grants self-government from 'above'.

It is often part of the philosophy of a unitary state that, regardless of the actual status of any of its parts, its entire territory constitutes a single sovereign entity or nation-state, and that by virtue of this the central government exercises sovereignty over the whole territory as of right. In a federation, on the other hand, sovereignty is often regarded as residing notionally in the component states, or as being shared between these states and the central government.

Confederation

A confederation, in modern political terms, is usually limited to a permanent union of sovereign states for common action in relation to other states.[2] The closest entity in the world to a confederation at this time is the European Union. While the word "confederation" was officially used when the present Canadian federal system was established in 1868, the term refers only to the process and not the resulting state since Canadian provinces are not sovereign and do not claim to be. In the case of Switzerland, while the country is still known as the Swiss Confederation (Confoederatio Helvetica, Confédération suisse) this is also now a misnomer since the Swiss cantons lost their sovereign status in 1848.[3]

In Belgium, however, the opposite movement is under way.[4] Belgium was founded as a centralised state, after the French model, but has gradually been reformed into a federal state by consecutive constitutional reforms since the 1970s. Moreover, although nominally called a federal state, the country's structure already has a number of confederational traits (ex. competences are exclusive for either the federal or the state level, the treaty-making power of the Federating units almost without any possible veto of the Federal Government). At present, there is a growing movement to transform the existing federal state into a looser confederation with two or three constitutive states and/or two special regions.[5]

A confederation is most likely to feature three differences when contrasted with a federation: (1) No real direct powers: many confederal decisions are externalised by member-state legislation; (2) Decisions on day-to-day-matters are not taken by simple majority but by special majorities or even by consensus or unanimity (veto for every member); (3) Changes of the constitution, usually a treaty, require unanimity.

Over time these terms acquired distinct connotations leading to the present difference in definition. An example of this is the United States under the Articles of Confederation. The Articles established a national government under what today would be defined as a federal system (albeit with a comparatively weaker federal government). However, Canadians, designed with a stronger central government than the U.S. in the wake of the Civil War of the latter, use the term "Confederation" to refer to the formation or joining, not the structure, of Canada. Legal reforms, court rulings, and political compromises have somewhat decentralised Canada in practice since its formation in 1867.

Empire

An empire is a multi-ethnic state, multinational state, or a group of nations with a central government established usually through coercion (on the model of the Roman Empire). An empire often includes self-governing regions, but these will possess autonomy only at the sufferance of the central government. On the other hand, a political entity that is an empire in name, may comprise several partly autonomous kingdoms organised together in a federation, with the empire being ruled over by an emperor or senior king (great king, high king, king of kings...). One example of this was the German Empire (1871-1918).

Comparison with other systems of autonomy

Federacy

A federacy[6] is where a unitary state incorporates one or more self-governing autonomous areas. It is distinguished from a federation in that the constitutional structure of the state is still unitary, but incorporates federalist principles. Some federacies, notably the Åland Islands, were established through international treaty.

Devolution

A federation differs from a devolved state, such as Indonesia, the United Kingdom and the Kingdom of Spain, because, in a devolved state, the central government can revoke the independence of the subunits (Scottish Parliament, Welsh National Assembly, Northern Ireland Assembly in the case of the UK) without changing the constitution.

Associated states

A federation also differs from an associated state, such as the Federated States of Micronesia (in free association with the United States) and Cook Islands and Niue (which form part of the Realm of New Zealand). There are two kinds of associated states: in case of Micronesia, association is concluded by treaty between two sovereign states; in case of Cook Islands and Niue, association is concluded by domestic legal arrangements.

Crown dependencies

The relation between the Crown dependencies of the Isle of Man and the bailiwicks of Guernsey and Jersey in the Channel Islands and the United Kingdom is very similar to a federate relation: the Islands enjoy independence from the United Kingdom, which, via The Crown, takes care of their foreign relations and defence – although the UK Parliament does have overall power to legislate for the dependencies. However, the islands are neither an incorporated part of the United Kingdom, nor are they considered to be independent or associated states. The Isle of Man does not have a monarch, per se; rather, the British Monarch is, ex officio, Lord of Mann.

Dependent territories

Dependent territories, such as the British overseas territories, are vested with varying degrees of power; some enjoy considerable independence from the sovereign state, which only takes care of their foreign relations and defence. However, they are neither considered to be part of it, nor recognised as sovereign or associated states.

De facto federations

The distinction between a federation and a unitary state is often quite ambiguous. A unitary state may closely resemble a federation in structure and, while a central government may possess the theoretical right to revoke the autonomy of a self-governing region, it may be politically difficult for it to do so in practice. The self-governing regions of some unitary states also often enjoy greater autonomy than those of some federations. For these reasons, it is sometimes argued that some modern unitary states are de facto federations[7].

De facto federations, or quasi-federations, are often termed "regional states".

Spain

Spain is suggested as one possible de facto federation[8] as it grants more self-government to its autonomous communities[9][10] than are retained by the constituent entities of most federations.[11] For the Spanish parliament to revoke the autonomy of regions such as Galicia, Catalonia or the Basque Country would be a political near-impossibility, though nothing bars it legally. The Spanish parliament has, however, suspended the autonomy of Catalonia in response to the Catalan declaration of independence, in the lead up to the 2017 Catalan election.[12] Additionally, some regions such as Navarre or the Basque Country have full control over taxation and spending, transferring a small payment to the central government for the common services (military, foreign relations, macroeconomic policy). For example, scholar Enrique Guillén López discusses the "federal nature of Spain's government (a trend that almost no one denies)."[13] Each autonomous community is governed by a Statute of Autonomy (Estatuto de Autonomía) under the Spanish Constitution of 1978.

South Africa

Map of South Africa with English labels
Provinces of South Africa.

Although South Africa bears some elements of a federal system, such as the allocation of certain powers to provinces, it is nevertheless constitutionally and functionally a unitary state.[14]

European Union

The European Union (EU) is a type of political union or confederation (the assemblage of societies or an association of two or more states into one state).[15] Robert Schuman, the initiator of the European Community system, wrote that a transnational Community like the founding of the European Coal and Steel Community lay midway between an association of States where they retained complete independence and a federation leading to a fusion of States in a super-state.[16] The Founding Fathers of the European Union wrote the Europe Declaration (Charter of the Community) at the time of the signing of the Treaty of Paris on 18 April 1951 saying that Europe should be organised on a transnational foundation. They envisaged a structure quite different from a federation called the European Political Community.

The EU is a three-pillar structure of the original supranational European Economic Community and the nuclear non-proliferation treaty, Euratom, plus two largely intergovernmental pillars dealing with External Affairs and Justice and Home Affairs. The EU is therefore not a de jure federation, although some academic observers conclude that after 50 years of institutional evolution since the Treaties of Rome it is becoming one.[17] The European Union possesses attributes of a federal state. However, its central government is far weaker than that of most federations and the individual members are sovereign states under international law, so it is usually characterized as an unprecedented form of supra-national union. The EU has responsibility for important areas such as trade, monetary union, agriculture, fisheries. Nonetheless, EU member states retain the right to act independently in matters of foreign policy and defense, and also enjoy a near monopoly over other major policy areas such as criminal justice and taxation. Since the Treaty of Lisbon, Member States' right to leave the Union is codified, and the Union operates with more qualified majority voting (rather than unanimity) in many areas.

By the signature of this Treaty, the participating Parties give proof of their determination to create the first supranational institution and that thus they are laying the true foundation of an organized Europe. This Europe remains open to all nations. We profoundly hope that other nations will join us in our common endeavour.

— Europe Declaration, signed by Konrad Adenauer (West Germany), Paul van Zeeland, Joseph Meurice (Belgium) Robert Schuman (France) Count Sforza (Italy) Joseph Bech (Luxembourg) and Dirk Stikker, J. R. M. van den Brink (The Netherlands).[18]

Europe has charted its own brand of constitutional federalism.

— European Constitutionalism Beyond the State. Edited with Marlene Wind (Cambridge Univ. Press, 2003) page 23, Joseph H. H. Weiler

Those uncomfortable using the "F" word in the EU context should feel free to refer to it as a quasi-federal or federal-like system. Nevertheless, for the purposes of the analysis here, the EU has the necessary attributes of a federal system. It is striking that while many scholars of the EU continue to resist analyzing it as a federation, most contemporary students of federalism view the EU as a federal system. (See for instance, Bednar, Filippov et al., McKay, Kelemen, Defigueido and Weingast)

— R. Daniel Kelemen

A more nuanced view has been given by the German Constitutional Court.[19] Here the EU is defined as 'an association of sovereign national states (Staatenverbund)'.[20] With this view, the European Union resembles more of a confederation.

People's Republic of China

Constitutionally, the power vested in the special administrative regions of the People's Republic is granted from the Central People's Government, through decision by the National People's Congress. However, there have been certain largely informal grants of power to the provinces, to handle economic affairs and implement national policies, resulting in a system some have termed federalism "with Chinese characteristics".[21]

Myanmar

Constitutionally a unitary state, the political system in Myanmar bears many elements of federalism. Each administrative divisions have its own cabinets and chief ministers, making it more like a federation rather than a unitary state.

Internal controversy and conflict

CentralAmerica1860MapSmall
The United Provinces of Central America was a short-lived federal republic

Certain forms of political and constitutional dispute are common to federations. One issue is that the exact division of power and responsibility between federal and regional governments is often a source of controversy. Often, as is the case with the United States, such conflicts are resolved through the judicial system, which delimits the powers of federal and local governments. The relationship between federal and local courts varies from nation to nation and can be a controversial and complex issue in itself.

Another common issue in federal systems is the conflict between regional and national interests, or between the interests and aspirations of different ethnic groups. In some federations the entire jurisdiction is relatively homogeneous and each constituent state resembles a miniature version of the whole; this is known as 'congruent federalism'. On the other hand, incongruent federalism exists where different states or regions possess distinct ethnic groups.

The ability of a federal government to create national institutions that can mediate differences that arise because of linguistic, ethnic, religious, or other regional differences is an important challenge. The inability to meet this challenge may lead to the secession of parts of a federation or to civil war, as occurred in the United States (southern states interpreted slavery under the tenth amendment as a state right, while northern states were against slavery, with a catalysis occurring in the then–Kansas Territory) and Switzerland. In the case of Malaysia, Singapore was expelled from the federation because of rising racial tension. In some cases, internal conflict may lead a federation to collapse entirely, as occurred in Nigeria, the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland, the Gran Colombia, the United Provinces of Central America, and the West Indies Federation.

Federal governments

The federal government is the common or national government of a federation. A federal government may have distinct powers at various levels authorized or delegated to it by its member states. The structure of federal governments vary. Based on a broad definition of a basic federalism, there are two or more levels of government that exist within an established territory and govern through common institutions with overlapping or shared powers as prescribed by a constitution.

Federal government is the government at the level of the sovereign state. Usual responsibilities of this level of government are maintaining national security and exercising international diplomacy, including the right to sign binding treaties. Basically, a modern federal government, within the limits defined by its constitution, has the power to make laws for the whole country, unlike local governments. As originally written, the United States Constitution was created to limit the federal government from exerting power over the states by enumerating only specific powers. It was further limited by the addition of the Tenth Amendment contained in the Bill of Rights and the Eleventh Amendment. However, later amendments, particularly the Fourteenth Amendment, gave the federal government considerable authority over states.

Federal government within this structure are the government ministries and departments and agencies to which the ministers of government are assigned.

For a detailed list of federated units, see Federated state § List of constituents by federation. There are 27 federations as of October 2013.[22][23]

Contemporary

Current federations
Year est. Federation Federating units Major federating units Minor federating units[t 1] Type
[t 2]
1853  Argentine Republic Provinces of Argentina 23 provinces 1 autonomous city R
1901  Commonwealth of Australia States and territories of Australia 6 states 3 federal territories (of which 2 are self-governing) and 7 external territories M
1920  Republic of Austria States of Austria 9 Länder or Bundesländer R
1970  Kingdom of Belgium Divisions of Belgium 3 communities, 3 regions M
1995  Bosnia and Herzegovina Divisions of Bosnia and Herzegovina 2 entities, one of which is itself a federation of 10 cantons 1 District [t 3] R
1889  Federative Republic of Brazil States of Brazil

Municipalities of Brazil[24]

27 federative units (of which one is a federal district and the others are states)[t 4] 5,570 municipalities.[25] R
1867  Canada Provinces and territories of Canada 10 provinces 3 territories M
1975  Union of the Comoros Autonomous Islands of the Comoros 3 islands R
1995  Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Regions of Ethiopia 9 regions 2 chartered cities R
1949  Federal Republic of Germany States of Germany 16 Länder or Bundesländer R
1950  Republic of India States and union territories of India 29 states (राज्य) 7 Union Territories, including a National Capital Territory R
2005  Republic of Iraq Governorates of Iraq 18 provinces R
1963  Malaysia States of Malaysia 13 states 3 federal territories M
1821  United Mexican States States of Mexico 32 federal entities, which are 31 states and its capital Mexico City R
1979  Federated States of Micronesia Administrative divisions of Micronesia 4 states R
2015    Federal Democratic Republic of Nepal Provinces of Nepal 7 provinces R
1963  Federal Republic of Nigeria States of Nigeria 36 states 1 federal capital territory R
1956  Islamic Republic of Pakistan Provinces and territories of Pakistan 4 provinces 2 autonomous territories and 1 federal capital territory R
1918  Russian Federation Federal subjects of Russia 46 oblasts, 22 republics, 9 krais, 4 autonomous okrugs, 3 federal-level cities, 1 autonomous oblast[26][27] R
1983  Federation of Saint Kitts and Nevis The islands St. Kitts and Nevis 2 islands M
2012  Federal Republic of Somalia Federal Member States of Somalia 18 regions[28] R
1848   Swiss Confederation Cantons of Switzerland 26 cantons[t 5] R
1971  United Arab Emirates Emirates of the UAE 7 emirates Federal absolute monarchy with seven Emirates M
1776[t 6]  United States of America Political divisions of the United States 50 states 1 federal district; 16 territories[t 7] R
1863  Bolivarian Republic of Venezuela States of Venezuela 23 states 1 federal district, 1 federal dependency R
  1. ^ That is, first-level subdivisions possessing less autonomy than the major federating units.
  2. ^ R = Federal republic; M = Federal monarchy.
  3. ^ Brčko District is de jure part of both entities, and de facto administered separately from either.
  4. ^ 20 provinces during the Empire of Brazil 1822–89
  5. ^ Three pairs of cantons have less power at federal level than the other 20 cantons, but the same degree of internal autonomy.
  6. ^ The United States Constitution, which replaced the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, was drafted in 1787 and was ratified in 1788. The first Congress and President did not take office until March 1789.
  7. ^ Of the 5 territories that are permanently inhabited, all are unincorporated, two are commonwealths and a third is formally unorganized. Of the other 11, one is incorporated and all are unorganized; together they form the United States Minor Outlying Islands. The term insular area includes both territories and places with a Compact of Free Association.

Long form titles

Defunct

Some of the proclaimed Arab federations were confederations de facto.

See also

References

  1. ^ Leonardy, U. (1992). "Federation and Länder in German foreign relations: Power‐sharing in treaty‐making and European affairs". German Politics. 1 (3): 119–135. doi:10.1080/09644009208404305.
  2. ^ Oxford English Dictionary
  3. ^ CH: Confoederatio Helvetica - Switzerland - Information Archived 30 March 2015 at the Wayback Machine. Swissworld.org. Retrieved on 2013-07-12.
  4. ^ One of the most important recent books about the Belgian institutions, written by one of the leading French-speaking jurists concludes : Vers le confédéralisme (Toward a Confederation). See: Charles-Etienne Lagasse, Les nouvelles institutions politiques de la Belgique et de l'Europe, Erasme, Namur 2003, p. 603 ISBN 2-87127-783-4
  5. ^ Many Flemings would prefer two states, Flanders and Wallonia, and two special regions, Brussels and the German-speaking region. In Wallonia, there is a wider support for three states : Flanders, Wallonia and Brussels.
  6. ^ Some dictionaries, such as the Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language (1989 ed.), state that federacy is synonymous with confederacy ("by aphesis"). In French, the English words federacy, confederacy and confederation are all translated by "confédération".
  7. ^ https://www.qmul.ac.uk/law/media/law/docs/undergrad/13-Sahadzic.pdf
  8. ^ https://www.eupedia.com/forum/threads/25811-Is-Spain-a-federation
  9. ^ Mallet, Victor (18 August 2010). "Flimsier footings". Financial Times. Retrieved 25 August 2010.(registration required)
  10. ^ "A survey of Spain: How much is enough?". The Economist. 6 November 2008. Retrieved 25 August 2010.(subscription required)
  11. ^ https://core.ac.uk/download/pdf/36013985.pdf
  12. ^ "Rajoy cesa al Govern, disuelve el Parlament y convoca elecciones para el 21 de diciembre". eldiario.es. 27 October 2017. Retrieved 10 August 2018.
  13. ^ Enrique Guillén López Archived 11 October 2009 at the Wayback Machine, JUDICIAL REVIEW IN SPAIN: THE CONSTITUTIONAL COURT, 41 Loyola of Los Angeles Law Review 541, 544 (2008).
  14. ^ Wright, Jonathan Haydn Faure (31 March 2014). "The type of government in the Republic of South Africa - Examining the presence of federal and unitary state elements in the republic". www.researchgate.net. Retrieved 8 November 2016. After careful research and analysis of various sources and the constitution, it can be confirmed that the government system in the Republic of South Africa is a unitary system. Observance of the government in action as well as analysis of the constitution has contributed to this confirmation. Despite the delocalisation enjoyed within the republic, the federal principle is not evident enough and it failed Wheare’s very simple federal test right in the beginning
  15. ^ "Federalist Paper No. 9", p.70 Alexander Hamilton
  16. ^ La Communaute du Charbon et de l'Acier, p7 Paul Reuter with preface by Robert Schuman. Paris 1953.
  17. ^ Josselin, J. M.; Marciano, A. (2006). "How the court made a federation of the EU". The Review of International Organizations. 2: 59. doi:10.1007/s11558-006-9001-y.
  18. ^ Schuman or Monnet? The real Architect of Europe. p 129. Bron 2004
  19. ^ "Federal Constitutional Court Press Release No. 72/2009 of 30 June 2009. Judgment of 30 June 2009: Act Approving the Treaty of Lisbon compatible with the Basic Law; accompanying law unconstitutional to the extent that legislative bodies have not been accorded sufficient rights of participation". Archived from the original on 22 October 2012. Retrieved 17 November 2012. Due to this structural democratic deficit, which cannot be resolved in an association of sovereign national states (Staatenverbund), further steps of integration that go beyond the status quo may undermine neither the States' political power of action nor the principle of conferral. The peoples of the Member States are the holders of the constituent power. The Basic Law does not permit the special bodies of the legislative, executive and judicial power to dispose of the essential elements of the constitution, i.e. of the constitutional identity (Article 23.1 sentence 3, Article 79.3 GG). The constitutional identity is an inalienable element of the democratic self-determination of a people.
    The original German uses the word Staatenverbund, which they translate as "association of sovereign states", rather than the word Staatenbund (confederation of states) or Bundesstaat (federal state).
  20. ^ BVerfG, 2 BvE 2/08 vom 30.6.2009, Absatz-Nr. (1–421)
  21. ^ Economic Warlords by Gregory H. Fuller
  22. ^ Forum of federations "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 26 July 2011. Retrieved 23 July 2011.CS1 maint: Archived copy as title (link)
  23. ^ "Guidebook to the Somali Draft Provisional Constitution". Archived from the original on 14 August 2013. Retrieved 2 August 2012.
  24. ^ "Constituição da República Federativa do Brasil, 1988. (in Portuguese)". www.planalto.gov.br. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  25. ^ "Instituto Brasileiro de Geografia e Estatística - IBGE (in Portuguese)". cidades.ibge.gov.br. Retrieved 27 May 2018.
  26. ^ Federal structure of Russia, Article 65 of Russian Constitution.
  27. ^ see Political status of Crimea.
  28. ^ "The CIA World Factbook". 6 September 2017. Retrieved 18 September 2017.
  29. ^ Whaley, Joachim (2002) [2002]. "2: Federal Habits: the Holy Roman Empire and the continuity of German Federalism". In Umbach, Maiken (ed.). German Federalism: Past, Present and Future. New Perspectives in German Political Studies. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. p. 15. ISBN 9780230505797. Retrieved 19 November 2017. Few would query the proposition that German federalism has deep historical roots. Indeed discussion of its contemporary manestation in the Federal Republic routinely refer to the federal traditions of the Holy Roman Empire -...].
  30. ^ Gained independence in 1957, joined with Sabah, Sarawak, and Singapore to form Malaysia in 1963.
  31. ^ The constitution of the USSR defined it as a federation, but at least until its final years in the late eighties and early nineties of the 20th century, it had in practice a highly centralized governance.
  32. ^ The Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was officially proclaimed in 1963. Prior to this, the communist Yugoslav state was named Democratic Federal Yugoslavia in 1943 and then Federal People's Republic of Yugoslavia in 1946. See: Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

External links

2002 FIFA World Cup

The 2002 FIFA World Cup was the 17th FIFA World Cup, the quadrennial world championship for men's national football teams organized by FIFA. It was held from 31 May to 30 June 2002 at sites in South Korea and Japan, with its final match hosted by Japan at International Stadium in Yokohama.

A field of 32 teams qualified for this World Cup, which was the first to be held in Asia, the first to be held outside of the Americas or Europe, as well as the first to be jointly-hosted by more than one nation. China, Ecuador, Senegal and Slovenia made their World Cup debuts.

The tournament had several upsets and surprise results, which included the defending champions France being eliminated in the group stage after earning a single point and second favourites Argentina also being eliminated in the group stage. South Korea managed to reach the semi-finals, beating Spain, Italy and Portugal en route. However, the most potent team at the tournament, Brazil, prevailed, winning the final against Germany 2–0, making them the first and only country to have won the World Cup five times. The victory qualified Brazil for the 2003 and subsequently 2005 FIFA Confederations Cups, its fourth and fifth Confederations Cup appearance in a row. In the third place play-off match against South Korea, Turkey won 3–2, taking third place in only their second ever FIFA World Cup.The 2002 World Cup was also the last one to use the golden goal rule.

2018 FIFA World Cup

The 2018 FIFA World Cup was the 21st FIFA World Cup, an international football tournament contested by the men's national teams of the member associations of FIFA once every four years. It took place in Russia from 14 June to 15 July 2018. It was the first World Cup to be held in Eastern Europe, and the 11th time that it had been held in Europe. At an estimated cost of over $14.2 billion, it was the most expensive World Cup. It was also the first World Cup to use the video assistant referee (VAR) system.The finals involved 32 teams, of which 31 came through qualifying competitions, while the host nation qualified automatically. Of the 32 teams, 20 had also appeared in the previous tournament in 2014, while both Iceland and Panama made their first appearances at a FIFA World Cup. A total of 64 matches were played in 12 venues across 11 cities.Germany were the defending champions, but were eliminated in the group stage.

The final took place on 15 July at the Luzhniki Stadium in Moscow, between France and Croatia. France won the match 4–2 to claim their second World Cup title, marking the fourth consecutive title won by a European team.

2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup

The 2019 FIFA U-20 World Cup was the 22nd edition of the FIFA U-20 World Cup, the biennial international men's youth football championship contested by the under-20 national teams of the member associations of FIFA, since its inception in 1977 as the FIFA World Youth Championship. The tournament was hosted by Poland between 23 May and 15 June 2019. This was the first FIFA tournament hosted by Poland; the country had hosted UEFA international football events in the past including the UEFA Euro 2012 with Ukraine and the 2017 UEFA European Under-21 Championship.

England won the previous tournament in South Korea, but could not defend their title after losing 3–0 to Norway in a play-off for the final qualifying place at the 2018 UEFA European Under-19 Championship in Finland. England were the sixth consecutive champions to have failed to qualify for the subsequent U-20 World Cup.

Ukraine won their first FIFA U-20 World Cup title after beating South Korea 3–1 in the final. They did it in their first appearance further than the round of 16, becoming the first team representing the country to win a FIFA competition title since their independence from the Soviet Union. The Soviet, whose record is now inherited by Russia, previously won the 1977 FIFA World Youth Championship.

2019 FIFA Women's World Cup

The 2019 FIFA Women's World Cup is the eighth edition of the FIFA Women's World Cup, the quadrennial international football championship contested by the women's national teams of the member associations of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA) between 7 June and 7 July 2019. In March 2015, France won the right to host the event; the first time the country is hosting the tournament, and the third time by a European nation. Matches are being played in nine cities across France. The United States enters the competition as defending champions. It is also the first Women's World Cup to use the video assistant referee (VAR) system.

Annexation of Crimea by the Russian Federation

The Crimean Peninsula was annexed by the Russian Federation in February–March 2014 and since then has been administered as two Russian federal subjects—the Republic of Crimea and the federal city of Sevastopol. The annexation from Ukraine followed a Russian military intervention in Crimea that took place in the aftermath of the 2014 Ukrainian revolution and was part of wider unrest across southern and eastern Ukraine.On 22–23 February 2014, Russian president Vladimir Putin convened an all-night meeting with security service chiefs to discuss the extrication of the deposed Ukrainian president, Viktor Yanukovych. At the end of the meeting Putin remarked that "we must start working on returning Crimea to Russia". On 23 February, pro-Russian demonstrations were held in the Crimean city of Sevastopol. On 27 February, masked Russian troops without insignia took over the Supreme Council (parliament) of Crimea, and captured strategic sites across Crimea, which led to the installation of the pro-Russian Aksyonov government in Crimea, the conducting of the Crimean status referendum and the declaration of Crimea's independence on 16 March 2014. Russia formally incorporated Crimea as two federal subjects of the Russian Federation with effect from 18 March 2014.Ukraine and many world leaders condemned the annexation and consider it to be a violation of international law and Russian-signed agreements safeguarding the territorial integrity of Ukraine, including the Belavezha Accords establishing the Commonwealth of Independent States in 1991, the Helsinki Accords, the Budapest Memorandum on Security Assurances of 1994 and the Treaty on friendship, cooperation and partnership between the Russian Federation and Ukraine. It led to the other members of the then G8 suspending Russia from the group, then introducing the first round of sanctions against the country. The United Nations General Assembly also rejected the vote and annexation, adopting a non-binding resolution affirming the "territorial integrity of Ukraine within its internationally recognised borders". The UN resolution also "underscores that the referendum having no validity, cannot form the basis for any alteration of the status of [Crimea]" and calls upon all States and international organizations not to recognize or to imply the recognition of Russia's annexation. In 2016, UN General Assembly reaffirmed non-recognition of the annexation and condemned "the temporary occupation of part of the territory of Ukraine—the Autonomous Republic of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol".The Russian Federation opposes the "annexation" label, with Putin defending the referendum as complying with the principle of self-determination of peoples. In July 2015, Russian prime minister Dmitry Medvedev said that Crimea had been fully integrated into Russia.

Commonwealth Games

The Commonwealth Games are an international multi-sport event involving athletes from the Commonwealth of Nations. The event was first held in 1930, and has taken place every four years since then. The Commonwealth Games were known as the British Empire Games from 1930 to 1950, the British Empire and Commonwealth Games from 1954 to 1966, and British Commonwealth Games from 1970 to 1974. It is the world's first multi-sport event which inducted equal number of women’s and men’s medal events and was implemented recently in the 2018 Commonwealth Games.Their creation was inspired by the Inter-Empire Championships, as a part of the Festival of Empire, which were held in London, United Kingdom in 1911. Melville Marks Robinson founded the games as the British Empire Games which were first hosted in Hamilton in 1930. During the 20th and 21st centuries, the evolution of the games movement has resulted in several changes to the Commonwealth Games. Some of these adjustments include the creation of the Commonwealth Winter Games for snow and ice sports for the commonwealth athletes, the Commonwealth Paraplegic Games for commonwealth athletes with a disability and the Commonwealth Youth Games for commonwealth athletes aged 14 to 18. The first edition of the winter games and paraplegic games were held in 1958 and 1962 respectively, with their last edition held in 1966 and 1974 respectively and the first youth games were held in 2000. The 1942 and 1946 Commonwealth Games were cancelled because of the Second World War.The Commonwealth Games are overseen by the Commonwealth Games Federation (CGF), which also controls the sporting programme and selects the host cities. The games movement consists of international sports federations (IFs), Commonwealth Games Associations (CGAs), and organising committees for each specific Commonwealth Games. There are several rituals and symbols, such as the Commonwealth Games flag and Queen's Baton, as well as the opening and closing ceremonies. Over 5,000 athletes compete at the Commonwealth Games in more than 15 different sports and more than 250 events. The first, second, and third-place finishers in each event receive Commonwealth Games medals: gold, silver, and bronze, respectively. Apart from many Olympic sports, the games also include some sports which are played predominantly in Commonwealth countries but which are not part of the Olympic programme, such as lawn bowls, netball and squash.Although there are currently 53 members of the Commonwealth of Nations, 71 teams currently participate in the Commonwealth Games, as a number of dependent territories compete under their own flags. The four Home Nations of the United Kingdom—England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland—also send separate teams.

Nineteen cities in nine countries (counting England, Wales, and Scotland separately) have hosted the event. Australia has hosted the Commonwealth Games five times (1938, 1962, 1982, 2006 and 2018); this is more times than any other nation. Two cities have hosted Commonwealth Games more than once: Auckland (1950, 1990) and Edinburgh (1970, 1986).

Only six countries have attended every Commonwealth Games: Australia, Canada, England, New Zealand, Scotland, and Wales. Australia has been the highest achieving team for twelve games, England for seven, and Canada for one.

The most recent Commonwealth Games were held in Gold Coast from 4 to 15 April 2018. The next Commonwealth Games are to be held in Birmingham from 27 July to 7 August 2022.

FIBA

The International Basketball Federation, more commonly known as FIBA ( FEE-bə), from its French name Fédération internationale de basket-ball, is an association of national organizations which governs the sport of basketball worldwide. Originally known as the Fédération internationale de basket-ball amateur (hence FIBA), in 1989 it dropped the word amateur from its name but retained the acronym; the "BA" now represents the first two letters of basketball.

FIBA defines the rules of basketball, specifies the equipment and facilities required, organises international competitions, regulates the transfer of athletes across countries, and controls the appointment of international referees. A total of 213 national federations are now members, organized since 1989 into five zones: Africa, Americas, Asia, Europe, and Oceania.

The FIBA Basketball World Cup is a world tournament for men's national teams held every four years. Teams compete for the Naismith Trophy, named in honor of basketball's Canadian creator James Naismith. The tournament structure is similar but not identical to that of the FIFA World Cup in football; these tournaments occurred in the same year from 1970 through 2014, but starting in 2019, the Basketball World Cup will move to the year following the FIFA World Cup. A parallel event for women's teams, the FIBA Women's Basketball World Cup, is also held quadrennially; from 1986 through 2014, it was held in the same year as the men's event but in a different country. The women's tournament will continue to be held in the same year as the FIFA World Cup.

In 2009 FIBA announced three new tournaments: two 12-team U-17 World Championships (one each for men and women) to be played in July 2010, and an eight-team FIBA World Club Championship to be launched in October 2010. However, the FIBA World Club Championship did not materialize. In its place, FIBA instead relaunched its original world club championship for men, the FIBA Intercontinental Cup, in 2013.

The newest global FIBA tournaments for national teams are in the three-player half-court variation, 3x3. The FIBA 3x3 U-18 World Championships were inaugurated in 2011, and the FIBA 3x3 World Championships for senior teams followed a year later. All events initially included separate tournaments for men's, women's, and mixed teams, but mixed championships are no longer contested. The U-18 championships, held annually, feature 32 teams in each individual tournament. The senior championships have 24 teams in each individual tournament, and are held in even-numbered years.

FIFA

The Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA FEEF-ə; French for 'International Federation of Association Football', Spanish: Federación Internacional

de Fútbol Asociación, German: Internationaler Verband des Association Football) is an organization which describes itself as an international governing body of association football, fútsal, beach soccer, and efootball. FIFA is responsible for the organization of football's major international tournaments, notably the World Cup which commenced in 1930 and the Women's World Cup which commenced in 1991.

FIFA was founded in 1904 to oversee international competition among the national associations of Belgium, Denmark, France, Germany, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. Headquartered in Zürich, its membership now comprises 211 national associations. Member countries must each also be members of one of the six regional confederations into which the world is divided: Africa, Asia, Europe, North & Central America and the Caribbean, Oceania, and South America.

Although FIFA does not control the rules of football, that being the responsibility of the International Football Association Board, it is responsible for both the organization of a number of tournaments and their promotion, which generate revenue from sponsorship. In 2017, FIFA had revenues of over US $734 million, for a net loss of $189 million, and had cash reserves of over US$930 million.Reports by investigative journalists have linked FIFA leadership with corruption, bribery, and vote-rigging related to the election of FIFA president Sepp Blatter and the organization's decision to award the 2018 and 2022 World Cups to Russia and Qatar, respectively. These allegations led to the indictments of nine high-ranking FIFA officials and five corporate executives by the U.S. Department of Justice on charges including racketeering, wire fraud, and money laundering. On 27 May 2015, several of these officials were arrested by Swiss authorities, who were launching a simultaneous but separate criminal investigation into how the organization awarded the 2018 and 2022 World Cups. Those among these officials who were also indicted in the U.S. are expected to be extradited to face charges there as well. Many officials were suspended by FIFA's ethics committee including Sepp Blatter and Michel Platini. In early 2017 reports became public about FIFA president Gianni Infantino attempting to prevent the re-elections of both chairmen of the ethics committee, Cornel Borbély and Hans-Joachim Eckert, during the FIFA congress in May 2017. On May 9, 2017, following Infantino's proposal, FIFA Council decided not to renew the mandates of Borbély and Eckert. Together with the chairmen, 11 of 13 committee members were removed.

FIFA Club World Cup

The FIFA Club World Cup is an international men's association football competition organised by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), the sport's global governing body. The tournament officially assigns the world title. The competition was first contested in 2000 as the FIFA Club World Championship. It was not held between 2001 and 2004 due to a combination of factors, most importantly the collapse of FIFA's marketing partner International Sport and Leisure. Since 2005, the competition has been held every year, and has been hosted by Brazil, Japan, the United Arab Emirates and Morocco. The FIFA Club World Cup's prestige is perceived quite differently in different parts of the football world; it struggles to attract interest in most of Europe, and it is the object of heated debate in Brazil and Argentina.

The first FIFA Club World Championship took place in Brazil in 2000. It ran in parallel with the Intercontinental Cup (also known as European/South American Cup), a competition played by representatives clubs of most developed continents in the football world, or the winners of the European Champions' Cup (UEFA) and the Copa Libertadores (CONMEBOL), first contested in 1960 and recognized in the aftermath (in 2017) by FIFA as a competition assignee of official world title. In 2005, the Intercontinental Cup was merged with the FIFA Club World Championship, and in 2006, the tournament was renamed as the FIFA Club World Cup. As required by the regulations, a representative from FIFA present the winner of the World Cup with the FIFA Club World Cup trophy and with a FIFA World Champions certificate.The current format of the tournament involves seven teams competing for the title at venues within the host nation over a period of about two weeks; the winners of that year's AFC Champions League (Asia), CAF Champions League (Africa), CONCACAF Champions League (North America), Copa Libertadores (South America), OFC Champions League (Oceania) and UEFA Champions League (Europe), along with the host nation's national champions, participate in a straight knock-out tournament. The host nation's national champions dispute a play-off against the Oceania champions, from which the winner joins the champions of Asia, Africa and North America at the quarter-finals. The quarter-final winners go on to face the European and South American champions, who enter at the semi-final stage, for a place in the final.

Real Madrid hold the record for most victories, winning the competition four times. Corinthians' inaugural victory remains the best result from a host nation's national league champions. Teams from Spain have won the tournament seven times, the most for any nation. The current champions are Spain's Real Madrid, who defeated Al-Ain 4–1 in the final of the 2018 edition, to win their fourth title in the competition and to become the first team ever to win it three years in a row and four times in total in the tournament's history.

FIFA U-20 World Cup

The FIFA U-20 World Cup is the biennial football world championship for male players under the age of 20, organised by FIFA. The competition has been staged every two years since the first tournament in 1977 held in Tunisia. Until 2005 it was known as the FIFA World Youth Championship.

FIFA World Cup

The FIFA World Cup, often simply called the World Cup, is an international association football competition contested by the senior men's national teams of the members of the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), the sport's global governing body. The championship has been awarded every four years since the inaugural tournament in 1930, except in 1942 and 1946 when it was not held because of the Second World War. The current champion is France, which won its second title at the 2018 tournament in Russia.

The current format of the competition involves a qualification phase, which currently takes place over the preceding three years, to determine which teams qualify for the tournament phase, which is often called the World Cup Finals. After this, 32 teams, including the automatically qualifying host nation(s), compete in the tournament phase for the title at venues within the host nation(s) over a period of about a month.

The 21 World Cup tournaments have been won by eight national teams. Brazil have won five times, and they are the only team to have played in every tournament. The other World Cup winners are Germany and Italy, with four titles each; Argentina, France and inaugural winner Uruguay, with two titles each; and England and Spain with one title each.

The World Cup is the most prestigious association football tournament in the world, as well as the most widely viewed and followed sporting event in the world, exceeding even the Olympic Games; the cumulative viewership of all matches of the 2006 World Cup was estimated to be 26.29 billion with an estimated 715.1 million people watching the final match, a ninth of the entire population of the planet.17 countries have hosted the World Cup. Brazil, France, Italy, Germany and Mexico have each hosted twice, while Uruguay, Switzerland, Sweden, Chile, England, Argentina, Spain, the United States, Japan and South Korea (jointly), South Africa and Russia have each hosted once. Qatar are planned as hosts of the 2022 finals, and 2026 will be jointly hosted by Canada, the United States and Mexico, which will give Mexico the distinction of being the first country to have hosted games in three finals.

Federal subjects of Russia

The federal subjects of Russia, also referred to as the subjects of the Russian Federation (Russian: субъекты Российской Федерации, subyekty Rossiyskoy Federatsii) or simply as the subjects of the federation (Russian: субъекты федерации subyekty federatsii), are the constituent entities of Russia, its top-level political divisions according to the Constitution of Russia. Since March 18, 2014, the Russian Federation constitutionally has consisted of 85 federal subjects, although the two most recently added subjects are recognized by most states as part of Ukraine.According to the Russian Constitution, the Russian Federation consists of republics, krais, oblasts, cities of federal importance, an autonomous oblast and autonomous okrugs, all of which are equal subjects of the Russian Federation. Three Russian cities of federal importance (Moscow, Saint Petersburg, and Sevastopol) have a status of both city and separate federal subject which comprises other cities and towns (Zelenograd, Troitsk, Kronstadt, Kolpino, etc.) within each federal city—keeping older structures of postal addresses. In 1993 the Russian Federation comprised 89 federal subjects. By 2008, the number of federal subjects had decreased to 83 because of several mergers. In 2014, Sevastopol and the Republic of Crimea became the 84th and 85th federal subjects of Russia.

Every federal subject has its own head, a parliament, and a constitutional court. Each federal subject has its own constitution and legislation. Subjects have equal rights in relations with federal government bodies. The federal subjects have equal representation—two delegates each—in the Federation Council, the upper house of the Federal Assembly. They do, however, differ in the degree of autonomy they enjoy (asymmetric federalism).

Post-Soviet Russia formed during the history of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic within the USSR and didn't change at the time of the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991. In 1992, during so-called "parade of sovereignties", separatist sentiments and the War of Laws within Russia, the Russian regions signed the Federation Treaty (Russian: Федеративный договор Federativny Dogovor), establishing and regulating the current inner composition of Russia, based on the division of authorities and powers among Russian government bodies and government bodies of constituent entities. The Federation Treaty was included in the text of the 1978 Constitution of the Russian SFSR. The current Constitution of Russia, adopted by national referendum on 12 December 1993, came into force on December 25, 1993 and abolished the model of the Soviet system of government introduced in 1918 by Vladimir Lenin and based on the right to secede from the country and on unlimited sovereignty of federal subjects (in practice it was never allowed), which conflicts with country's integrity and federal laws. The new constitution eliminated a number of legal conflicts, reserved the rights of the regions, introduced local self-government and didn't grant the Soviet-era right to secede from the country. In the late 1990s and early 2000s, the political system became de jure closer to other modern federal states with a republican form of government in the world. In the 2000s, following the policy of Vladimir Putin and of the United Russia party (dominant party in all federal subjects), the Russian parliament changed the distribution of tax revenues, reduced the number of elections in the regions and gave more power to the federal authorities.

There are several groupings of Russian regions:

Federal subjects should not be confused with the eight federal districts which are not subdivisions of Russia — the federal districts are much larger and each encompasses many federal subjects. Federal districts were created by Executive Order of the President of Russia especially for presidential envoys.

Time zones are defined by the Order of the federal government.

The composition of judicial districts is defined by the federal law "On arbitration courts".

Economic regions are administered by the Ministry of Economic Development.

The Ministry of Defense uses the terminology of Military districts.

International Tennis Federation

The International Tennis Federation (ITF) is the governing body of world tennis, wheelchair tennis, and beach tennis. It was founded in 1913 as the International Lawn Tennis Federation by twelve national associations, and as of 2016, is affiliated with 211 national tennis associations and six regional associations.

The ITF's governance responsibilities include maintaining and enforcing the rules of tennis, regulating international team competitions, promoting the game, and preserving the sport's integrity via anti-doping and anti-corruption programs. The ITF partners with the Women's Tennis Association (WTA) and the Association of Tennis Professionals (ATP) to govern professional tennis.

The ITF organizes the Grand Slam events, annual team competitions for men (Davis Cup), women (Fed Cup), and mixed teams (Hopman Cup), as well as tennis and wheelchair tennis events at the Summer Olympic and Paralympic Games on behalf of the International Olympic Committee. The ITF sanctions the Grand Slam tennis tournaments as well as circuits which span age ranges (junior, professional men and women, and seniors) as well as disciplines (wheelchair tennis; beach tennis). In addition to these circuits, the ITF also maintains rankings for juniors, seniors, wheelchair and beach tennis.

List of WWE personnel

WWE is a professional wrestling promotion based in Stamford, Connecticut. WWE personnel consists of professional wrestlers, managers, play-by-play and color commentators, ring announcers, interviewers, referees, trainers, producers, script writers, and various other positions. Executives and board members are also listed.

WWE contracts typically range from developmental contracts to multi-year deals. WWE describes most personnel as "independent contractors." Since the reintroduction of WWE's brand extension in 2016, personnel on the main roster are assigned to either the Raw or SmackDown brands. A level below the main roster is the NXT brand. Specialty brands in WWE include 205 Live, which is for male wrestlers 205 lbs. and under (designated by WWE as cruiserweights), and NXT UK, which is for wrestlers based in the United Kingdom.

Main roster personnel primarily appear on Monday Night Raw and SmackDown Live, while cruiserweight wrestlers appear on 205 Live. Wrestlers from NXT appear on the brand's eponymous TV show, while wrestlers from NXT UK also have their own weekly show.

Personnel can also appear on WWE's other weekly television programming, as well as pay-per-views, and on untelevised live events.

Personnel in WWE's developmental system are assigned to train at the Performance Center in Orlando, Florida. UK-based developmental wrestlers train at the UK Performance Center in London, England.

As WWE has partnerships with the U.S. independent promotion Evolve, Scotland's Insane Championship Wrestling, England's Progress Wrestling, and Germany's Westside Xtreme Wrestling, wrestlers from those groups may also make periodic appearances at WWE events and on WWE programming.

Malaysia

Malaysia ( (listen) mə-LAY-zee-ə, -⁠zhə; Malay: [məlejsiə]) is a country in Southeast Asia. The federal constitutional monarchy consists of 13 states and three federal territories, separated by the South China Sea into two similarly sized regions, Peninsular Malaysia and East Malaysia (Malaysian Borneo). Peninsular Malaysia shares a land and maritime border with Thailand and maritime borders with Singapore, Vietnam, and Indonesia. East Malaysia shares land and maritime borders with Brunei and Indonesia and a maritime border with the Philippines and Vietnam. Kuala Lumpur is the national capital and largest city while Putrajaya is the seat of federal government. With a population of over 30 million, Malaysia is the world's 44th most populous country. The southernmost point of continental Eurasia, Tanjung Piai, is in Malaysia. In the tropics, Malaysia is one of 17 megadiverse countries, with large numbers of endemic species.

Malaysia has its origins in the Malay kingdoms which, from the 18th century, became subject to the British Empire, along with the British Straits Settlements protectorate. Peninsular Malaysia was unified as the Malayan Union in 1946. Malaya was restructured as the Federation of Malaya in 1948, and achieved independence on 31 August 1957. Malaya united with North Borneo, Sarawak, and Singapore on 16 September 1963 to become Malaysia. In 1965, Singapore was expelled from the federation.The country is multi-ethnic and multi-cultural, which plays a large role in its politics. About half the population is ethnically Malay, with large minorities of Malaysian Chinese, Malaysian Indians, and indigenous peoples. While recognising Islam as the country's established religion, the constitution grants freedom of religion to non-Muslims. The government system is closely modelled on the Westminster parliamentary system and the legal system is based on common law. The head of state is the king, known as the Yang di-Pertuan Agong. He is an elected monarch chosen from the hereditary rulers of the nine Malay states every five years. The head of government is the Prime Minister. The country's official language is Malaysian, a standard form of the Malay language. English remains an active second language.

After independence, Malaysian GDP grew at an average of 6.5% per annum for almost 50 years. The economy has traditionally been fuelled by its natural resources, but is expanding in the sectors of science, tourism, commerce and medical tourism. Malaysia has a newly industrialised market economy, ranked fourth largest in Southeast Asia and 38th largest in the world. It is a founding member of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations, the East Asia Summit and the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation, and a member of Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation, the Commonwealth of Nations, and the Non-Aligned Movement.

President of Russia

The President of Russia, officially the President of the Russian Federation, (Russian: Президент Российской Федерации, tr. Prezident Rossiyskoy Federatsii) is the head of state of the Russian Federation, as well as holder of the highest office in Russia and commander-in-chief of the Russian Armed Forces.

In 1991, the office was briefly known as the President of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic (Russian: Президент Российской Советской Федеративной Социалистической Республики) until 25 December 1991. According to the 1978 Russian Constitution, the President of Russia was head of the executive branch and headed the Council of Ministers of Russia. According to the current 1993 Constitution of Russia, the President of Russia is not a part of the Government of Russia, which exercises executive power.In all cases where the President of the Russian Federation is unable to fulfill his duties, they shall be temporarily delegated to the Prime Minister of Russia, who becomes Acting President of Russia. The Chairman of the Federation Council is the third important position after the President and the Prime Minister. In the case of incapacity of both the President and Prime Minister, the chairman of the upper house of parliament becomes acting head of state.The power includes execution of federal law, alongside the responsibility of appointing federal ministers, diplomatic, regulatory and judicial officers, and concluding treaties with foreign powers with the advice and consent of the State Duma and the Federation Council. The president is further empowered to grant federal pardons and reprieves, and to convene and adjourn the Federal Assembly under extraordinary circumstances. The president also directs the foreign and domestic policy of the Russian Federation.

The president is elected directly through a popular vote to a six-year term. The law prohibits anyone from ever being elected to the presidency for a third consecutive term. In all, three individuals have served four presidencies spanning six full terms. In May 2012, Vladimir Putin became the fourth president; he was re-elected in March 2018 and inaugurated in May to a six-year term.

Russia

Russia (Russian: Росси́я, tr. Rossiya, IPA: [rɐˈsʲijə]), or the Russian Federation (Russian: Росси́йская Федера́ция, tr. Rossiyskaya Federatsiya, IPA: [rɐˈsʲijskəjə fʲɪdʲɪˈratsɨjə]), is a transcontinental country in Eastern Europe and North Asia. At 17,125,200 square kilometres (6,612,100 sq mi), Russia is by a considerable margin the largest country in the world by area, covering more than one-eighth of the Earth's inhabited land area, and the ninth most populous, with about 146.79 million people as of 2019, including Crimea. About 77% of the population live in the western, European part of the country. Russia's capital, Moscow, is one of the largest cities in the world and the second largest city in Europe; other major cities include Saint Petersburg, Novosibirsk, Yekaterinburg and Nizhny Novgorod. Extending across the entirety of Northern Asia and much of Eastern Europe, Russia spans eleven time zones and incorporates a wide range of environments and landforms. From northwest to southeast, Russia shares land borders with Norway, Finland, Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania and Poland (both with Kaliningrad Oblast), Belarus, Ukraine, Georgia, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, China, Mongolia and North Korea. It shares maritime borders with Japan by the Sea of Okhotsk and the U.S. state of Alaska across the Bering Strait. However, Russia recognises two more countries that border it, Abkhazia and South Ossetia, both of which are internationally recognized as parts of Georgia.

The East Slavs emerged as a recognizable group in Europe between the 3rd and 8th centuries AD. Founded and ruled by a Varangian warrior elite and their descendants, the medieval state of Rus arose in the 9th century. In 988 it adopted Orthodox Christianity from the Byzantine Empire, beginning the synthesis of Byzantine and Slavic cultures that defined Russian culture for the next millennium. Rus ultimately disintegrated into a number of smaller states; most of the Rus' lands were overrun by the Mongol invasion and became tributaries of the nomadic Golden Horde in the 13th century. The Grand Duchy of Moscow gradually reunified the surrounding Russian principalities and achieved independence from the Golden Horde. By the 18th century, the nation had greatly expanded through conquest, annexation, and exploration to become the Russian Empire, which was the third largest empire in history, stretching from Poland on the west to Alaska on the east.Following the Russian Revolution, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic became the largest and leading constituent of the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, the world's first constitutionally socialist state. The Soviet Union played a decisive role in the Allied victory in World War II, and emerged as a recognized superpower and rival to the United States during the Cold War. The Soviet era saw some of the most significant technological achievements of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite and the launching of the first humans in space. By the end of 1990, the Soviet Union had the world's second largest economy, largest standing military in the world and the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction. Following the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1991, twelve independent republics emerged from the USSR: Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia, Kyrgyzstan, Moldova, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and the Baltic states regained independence: Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania; the Russian SFSR reconstituted itself as the Russian Federation and is recognized as the continuing legal personality and a successor of the Soviet Union. It is governed as a federal semi-presidential republic.

Russia's economy ranks as the twelfth largest by nominal GDP and sixth largest by purchasing power parity in 2018. Russia's extensive mineral and energy resources are the largest such reserves in the world, making it one of the leading producers of oil and natural gas globally. The country is one of the five recognized nuclear weapons states and possesses the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction. Russia is a great power as well as a regional power and has been characterised as a potential superpower. It is a permanent member of the United Nations Security Council and an active global partner of ASEAN, as well as a member of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO), the G20, the Council of Europe, the Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC), the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), and the World Trade Organization (WTO), as well as being the leading member of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) and one of the five members of the Eurasian Economic Union (EEU), along with Armenia, Belarus, Kazakhstan and Kyrgyzstan.

WWE

World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc., d/b/a WWE, is an American integrated media and entertainment company that is primarily known for professional wrestling. WWE has also branched out into other fields, including movies, real estate, and various other business ventures.

The WWE name also refers to the professional wrestling promotion itself, founded by Jess McMahon and Toots Mondt in 1952 as the Capitol Wrestling Corporation. As of 2019, it is the largest wrestling promotion in the world, holding over 500 events a year, with the roster divided up into various globally traveling brands, and is available to about 36 million viewers in more than 150 countries. The company's global headquarters is located in Stamford, Connecticut, with offices in major cities across the world.As in other professional wrestling promotions, WWE shows are not legitimate contests, but purely entertainment-based, featuring storyline-driven, scripted, and choreographed matches, though matches often include moves that can put performers at risk of injury, even death, if not performed correctly. This was first publicly acknowledged by WWE's owner Vince McMahon in 1989 to avoid taxes from athletic commissions. Since the 1980s, WWE publicly has branded their product as sports entertainment, acknowledging the product's roots in competitive sport and dramatic theater.

The company's majority owner is its chairman and CEO, Vince McMahon, who retains a 42% ownership of the company's outstanding stock and 83% of the voting power.The current entity, incorporated on February 21, 1980, was previously known as Titan Sports, Inc., which was founded that same year in South Yarmouth, Massachusetts. It acquired Capitol Wrestling Corporation Ltd., the holding company for the World Wrestling Federation, in 1982. Titan was renamed World Wrestling Federation, Inc. in 1998, then World Wrestling Federation Entertainment, Inc. in 1999, and finally the current World Wrestling Entertainment, Inc. in 2002. Since 2011, the company has officially branded itself solely as WWE though the company's legal name was not changed.

WWE Championship

The WWE Championship is a world heavyweight championship created and promoted by the American professional wrestling promotion WWE on the SmackDown brand. It is one of two world titles for WWE's main roster, alongside the WWE Universal Championship that was created for the Raw brand as a result of the 2016 WWE draft. The current champion is Kofi Kingston, who is in his first reign.

The original world championship of the promotion, it was established by the then-World Wide Wrestling Federation (WWWF) on April 25, 1963 as the WWWF World Heavyweight Championship, following the promotion seceding from the National Wrestling Alliance (NWA). The inaugural champion was Buddy Rogers. Since its inception, the title has undergone many name changes due to company name changes and title unifications. It is the oldest championship currently active in the WWE, and is presented as being the promotion's most prestigious title, with many matches for the title having headlined pay-per-view events – including WWE's flagship event WrestleMania. In professional wrestling in general, it is considered by many to be one of the most prestigious championships of all time.From its inception until 2001, it was promoted as WWE's sole primary championship. An additional world title, the WCW Championship, was added after the then-World Wrestling Federation's purchase of World Championship Wrestling in early 2001. The titles were later unified as the Undisputed Championship. After the first brand extension in 2002 and the promotion becoming the WWE, the championship became exclusive to SmackDown, and the World Heavyweight Championship was created for Raw. ECW became a third brand in 2006, adding the ECW World Heavyweight Championship. Over the course of the first brand extension, the WWE Championship switched between brands, usually as a result of the annual draft. The ECW Championship was deactivated in 2010, and the World Heavyweight Championship was unified with the WWE Championship in 2013. The championship was again the sole world title of WWE's main roster until the reintroduction of the brand extension in 2016.

Autonomous types of first-tier subdivision administration
Federalism
Unitary state
See also
Designations for types of administrative territorial entities

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