(Redirected from Proto-state)
A map of the Middle East showing areas controlled by ISIL as of May 2015: a number of major cities in northern Syria and Iraq, and corridors connecting them.
Maximum extent of the territory of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (frequently described as a proto-state) in Syria and Iraq, on 21 May 2015.[1]

A quasi-state or state-like entity,[2] to include what is termed a proto-state,[3][2] is a political entity that does not represent a fully institutionalized or autonomous sovereign state.[4]

The precise definition of quasi-state in political literature fluctuates depending on the context in which it is used. It has been used by some modern scholars to describe the self-governing British colonies and dependencies that exercised a form of home rule but remained crucial parts of the British Empire and subject firstly to the metropole's administration.[5] Similarly, the Republics of the Soviet Union, which represented administrative units with their own respective national distinctions, have also been described as quasi-states.[4]

In more recent usage, the term quasi-state has most often been evoked in reference to militant secessionist groups who claim, and exercise some form of territorial control over, a specific region, but which lack institutional cohesion.[5][failed verification – talk page. Please help improve this article by introducing citations to additional sources.
Find sources: "Quasi-state" – news · newspapers · books · scholar · JSTOR (April 2021)

Proto-state Parent state Achieved statehood Since Source
 Adjara  Georgia No 1921 [5]
 Adygea  Russia No 1922 [5]
 Åland  Finland No 1921 [5][32]
 Altai Republic  Russia No 1922 [5]
 Aosta Valley  Italy No 1948 [5]
 Aruba  Netherlands No 1986 [5]
Ashanti  Ghana No 1957 [33]
 Azad Kashmir  Pakistan No 1949 [5]
 Azores  Portugal No 1816 [5]
 Bashkortostan  Russia No 1919 [5]
 British Virgin Islands  United Kingdom No 1960 [5]
 Bougainville  Papua New Guinea No 2001 [5]
 Buryatia  Russia No 1923 [5]
 Canary Islands  Spain No 1816 [5]
 Catalonia  Spain No 1978 [5]
 Cayman Islands  United Kingdom No 1962 [5]
 Chechnya  Russia No 1922 [5]
 Chin State  Myanmar No 1949 [5]
 Christmas Island  Australia No 1958 [5]
 Chuvashia  Russia No 1920 [5]
 Cook Islands  New Zealand No 1888 [5]
 Corsica  France No 1978 [5]
 Curaçao  Netherlands No 1816 [5]
 Dagestan  Russia No 1921 [5]
 Easter Island  Chile No 1944 [5]
 Euskadi  Spain No 1978 [5]
 Falkland Islands  United Kingdom No 1833 [5]
 Faroe Islands  Denmark No 1816 [5]
 Flanders  Belgium No 1970 [5]
 French Polynesia  France No 1847 [5]
 Friuli-Venezia Giulia  Italy No 1963 [5]
 Gagauzia  Moldova No 1991 [5]
 Galicia  Spain No 1978 [5]
 Gaza Strip  Israel
De facto 1994 [note 1]
 Greenland  Denmark No 1816 [5]
 Guam  United States No 1816 [5]
 Guernsey  United Kingdom No 1204 [5]
Indian reservations  United States No 1658 [5]
 Ingushetia  Russia No 1924 [5]
 Iraqi Kurdistan  Iraq De facto 1991 [35]
 Isle of Man  United Kingdom No 1828 [5]
 Jammu and Kashmir  India No 1921 [5]
 Jersey  United Kingdom No 1204 [5]
Jewish Autonomous Oblast  Russia No 1934
 Jubaland  Somalia No 2001 [note 2]
 Kabardino-Balkaria  Russia No 1921 [5]
 Kachin State  Myanmar No 1949 [5]
 Kalmykia  Russia No 1920 [5]
 Karachay-Cherkessia  Russia No 1922 [5]
 Karelia  Russia No 1923 [5]
 Kayah State  Myanmar No 1949 [5]
 Kayin State  Myanmar No 1949 [5]
 Khakassia  Russia No 1934 [5]
 Komi Republic  Russia No 1922 [5]
 Kosovo  Serbia De facto 2008 [5]
 Madeira  Portugal No 1816 [5]
 Mari El  Russia No 1920 [5]
 Marquesas Islands  France No 1844 [5]
 Montserrat  United Kingdom No 1632 [5]
 Mon State  Myanmar No 1949 [5]
 Mordovia  Russia No 1934 [5]
 New Caledonia  France No 1853 [5]
 Northern Ireland  United Kingdom No 1922 [5]
 Northern Marianas  United States No 1899 [5]
 North Ossetia-Alania  Russia No 1921 [5]
 Nunavut  Canada No 1999 [5]
 Palestinian National Authority  Israel De jure 1993 [38]
 Puerto Rico  United States No 1816 [5]
 Puntland  Somalia No 1998 [39]
 Quebec  Canada No 1816 [5]
 Saint Helena  United Kingdom No 1834 [5]
 Sardinia  Italy No 1816 [5]
 Sakha Republic  Russia No 1922 [5]
 Scotland  United Kingdom No 1816 [5]
 Shan State  Myanmar No 1949 [5]
 Sicily  Italy No 1816 [5]
 Sint Maarten  Netherlands No 1848 [5]
 Svalbard  Norway No 1992 [5]
 Tatarstan  Russia No 1920 [5]
 Temotu  Solomon Islands No 1981 [5]
 Trentino-Alto Adige/Südtirol  Italy No 1948 [5]
 Turks and Caicos  United Kingdom No 1973 [5]
 Tuva  Russia No 1911 [5]
 Udmurtia  Russia No 1920 [5]
 United States Virgin Islands  United States No 1816 [5]
 Wales  United Kingdom No 1816 [5]
 Wallonia  Belgium No 1970 [5]
 Wa State  Myanmar No 1989 [40][41]
 Zanzibar  Tanzania No 1964 [5]


Proto-state Parent state Achieved statehood Dates Source
 Bophuthatswana  South Africa De jure 1977–1994 [42]
Bosnia-Herzegovina  Yugoslavia Yes 1943–1992 [18]
 Byelorussian Soviet Socialist Republic  Russian SFSR,  Soviet Union Yes 1920–1991
 Ciskei  South Africa De jure 1981–1994 [42]
Republic of Crimea  Ukraine No March 11–18, 2014 [43][44]
Croatia  Yugoslavia Yes 1943–1991 [18]
Carpatho-Ukraine Carpathian Ruthenia  Czechoslovakia De facto 1919–1939
 Czech Socialist Republic  Czechoslovakia Yes 1969–1993 [31]
 East Caprivi  South Africa No 1972–1989 [42]
Finnish Socialist Workers' Republic  Finland No 1918
Ukraine Galician Ruthenians  Austria-Hungary De facto 1848–1918
 Gazankulu  South Africa No 1971–1994 [42]
 Hereroland  South Africa No 1970–1989 [42]
 KaNgwane  South Africa No 1972–1994 [42]
Republic of Karelia Karelian ASSR  Russian SFSR,  Soviet Union union republic 1923–1940
 Kavangoland  South Africa No 1973–1989 [42]
 KwaNdebele  South Africa No 1981–1994 [42]
 KwaZulu  South Africa No 1981–1994 [42]
 Lebowa  South Africa No 1972–1994 [42]
Macedonia  Yugoslavia Yes 1945–1991 [18]
Montenegro  Yugoslavia,  Serbia and Montenegro Yes 1945–2006 [18]
Moldova Moldavian ASSR  Ukrainian SSR,  Soviet Union union republic 1924–1940
 Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic  Soviet Union Yes 1940–1991
 Ovamboland  South Africa No 1973–1989 [42]
 QwaQwa  South Africa No 1974–1994 [42]
 Russian SFSR  Soviet Union Yes 1917–1991 [4]
Serbia  Yugoslavia,  Serbia and Montenegro Yes 1945–2006 [18]
Singapore Singapore  Malaysia Yes 1963–1965 [5]
 Slovak Socialist Republic  Czechoslovakia Yes 1969–1993 [31]
Slovenia  Yugoslavia Yes 1945–1991 [18]
South Africa South West Africa (Namibia)  South Africa Yes 1915–1991 [45]
South Sudan Southern Sudan  Sudan Yes 2005–2011 [46]
 Transkei  South Africa De jure 1976–1994 [42]
 Trucial States  United Kingdom Yes 1820–1971 [47]
Turkestan ASSR  Russian SFSR No 1918–1924 [48]
 Ukrainian People's Republic of Soviets  Russian SFSR No 1917–1918
 Ukrainian Soviet Republic  Russian SFSR No 1918
 Ukrainian Soviet Socialist Republic  Russian SFSR,  Soviet Union Yes 1919–1991 [49]
 Venda  South Africa De jure 1979–1994 [42]

Secessionist, insurgent, and self-proclaimed autonomous proto-states


Proto-state Parent state Achieved statehood Since Source
Abkhazia  Georgia De facto 1992
Al-Shabaab  Somalia No 2009 [50]
Allied Democratic Forces  Democratic Republic of the Congo
No 1996 [51]
Ambazonia  Cameroon No 2017
Ansar al-Sharia (Yemen)  Yemen No 2011 [50]
Dar El Kuti  Central African Republic De facto 2015 [52]
 Donetsk People's Republic and

 Luhansk People's Republic

 Ukraine De facto 2014 [53]
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant Islamic State (ISIL)  Iraq
De facto 2013 [27][54][55]
Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan  Pakistan No c. 2006 [50]
Republic of Artsakh  Azerbaijan/ Armenia De facto 1991
Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria  Syria Partial 2013 [56]
 Sahrawi Republic  Morocco Partial 1976


South Ossetia  Georgia De facto 1991
Tigray People's Liberation Front  Ethiopia Partial 2020
Transnistria  Moldova De facto 1990
Southern Transitional Council  Yemen De facto 2017
Afghanistan Taliban  Afghanistan No 2002 [58][50]
Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan  Pakistan No 2002 [50]
West Papua  Indonesia No 1971
Zapatista Autonomous Municipalities  Mexico De facto 1994


Proto-state Parent state Achieved statehood Dates Source
Al-Nusra Front  Syria No 2012–2017 [54]
Ansar al-Islam  Iraq No 2001–2003 [50]
Angola  Portugal Yes 1961–1975
Ansar al-Sharia (Libya)  Libya No 2014–2017 [54]
Ansar Dine  Mali No 2012–2013 [54]
Russia Armed Forces of South Russia  Russia No 1919–1920 [59]
 Azawad  Mali De facto 2012–2013 [6]
Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant Boko Haram  Nigeria
No 2013–2015 [54]
 Carpatho-Ukraine  Czechoslovakia,  Hungary De facto 1938–1939
Chechen Ichkeria  Russia No 1991–2000 [28]
 Chinese Soviet Republic Taiwan China No 1931–1937 [21]
Communist China Taiwan China Yes 1927–1949 [21]
Dubrovnik Republic Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Yugoslavia No 1991–1992 [5]
Eastern Slavonia, Baranja and Western Syrmia Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Yugoslavia No 1995–1998 [5]
FARC  Colombia No 1964–2017 [58]
Groupe islamique armé  Algeria No 1993–1995 [50]
Croatian Republic of Herzeg-Bosnia Herzeg-Bosnia  Bosnia-Herzegovina No 1991–1996 [5]
 Hyderabad State  India De facto 1947–1948 [5]
Idel-Ural State Russia Russia No 1917–1918 [60]
Republic of Ireland Irish Republic  United Kingdom Yes 1919–1922 [61]
Jamiat-e Islami  Afghanistan No 1982–1989 [62]
Republic of Kosova  FR Yugoslavia No 1992–1999 [63]
 Jubaland  Somalia No 1998–2001 [36]
Junbish-e Milli  Afghanistan No 1992-1997 [64]
Liberated Yugoslavia  Independent State of Croatia
Occupied Serbia
Yes 1942–1945 [65]
 Mozambique  Portugal Yes 1964–1974 [note 3]
Revolutionary Vietnam  South Vietnam No 1969–1976


Republika Srpska  Bosnia-Herzegovina No 1991–1995 [5]
Red Spears' rebel area in Dengzhou China No 1929 [66]
Serbian Krajina  Croatia No 1991–1995 [67]
Sudetenland  Czechoslovakia No 1918–1938 [68]
Liberia "Taylorland" or Greater Liberia  Liberia No 1990–1995/97 [note 4]
Tamil Eelam  Sri Lanka No 1983–2008 [58]
 Ukrainian National Government  Soviet Union,  Nazi Germany No 1941
 Ukrainian People's Republic  Russian Republic,  Russian SFSR Yes 1917–1921
UNITA  Angola No 1975–2002 [71]
 United States  Great Britain Yes 1776-1783
 West Ukrainian People's Republic  Austria-Hungary,  Poland No 1918–1919
Autonomous Province of Western Bosnia Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia Yugoslavia No 1993–1995 [5]
 Zaporozhian Sich Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth Yes 16th century–1649 [72]
Islamic Emirate of Kunar Afghanistan No 1989–1991 [50]
Islamic Republic of Imbaba  Egypt No 1989–1992 [50]
Fatah al-Islam  Lebanon No 2007 [50]

See also

Notes and references


  1. ^ Although officially controlled by the Palestinian National Authority, the Gaza Strip is administered separately and has achieved its own unique sub-national status as a Palestinian proto-state.[34]
  2. ^ Jubaland declared itself independent of Somalia in 1998.[36] It technically rejoined Somalia in 2001 when its ruling Juba Valley Alliance became part of the country's Transitional Federal Government. However, Jubaland has continued to persist as a more or less autonomous state.[37]
  3. ^ The erosion of Portuguese military control over northern Mozambique during the Mozambican War of Independence allowed local guerrillas to establish a proto-state there, which survived until the war ended in 1974. Home to about a million people, the miniature insurgent proto-state was managed by FRELIMO's civilian wing and was able to provide administrative services, open trade relations with Tanzania, and even supervise the construction of its own schools and hospitals with foreign aid.[19]
  4. ^ In course of the First Liberian Civil War, the Liberian central government effectively collapsed, allowing warlords to establish their own fiefs. One of the most powerful rebel leaders in Liberia, Charles Taylor, set up his own domain in a way resembling an actual state: He reorganized his militia into a military-like organization (split into Army, Marines, Navy, and Executive Mansion Guard), established his de facto capital at Gbarnga, and created a civilian government and justice system under his control that were supposed to enforce law and order. The area under his control was commonly called "Taylorland" or "Greater Liberia" and even became somewhat stable and peaceful until it largely disintegrated in 1994/5 as result of attacks by rival militias. In the end, however, Taylor won the civil war and was elected President of Liberia, with his regime becoming the new central government.[69][70]


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  3. ^ a b "How the Islamic State Declared War on the World". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 2016-07-20.
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