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State of Gassasinia
Motto: إلى الأمام الغساسنة
iilaa al'amam alghasasinat
Anthem: إلى الأمام الغساسنة
iilaa al'amam alghasasinat
|Government||Unitary Parliamentary Constitutional Monarchy|
• Prime Minister
• Deputy Prime Minister
• Speaker of Parliament
• President of the House of Peers
• Chief Justice
|House of Peers|
|House of Representatives|
|Independence from Shadoveil|
|1st of March, 1949|
|2nd of May, 1979|
|75,000 km2 (29,000 sq mi)|
• February 2019 estimate
• January 2015 census
|200/km2 (518.0/sq mi)|
|GDP (PPP)||2020 estimate|
• Per capita
|GDP (nominal)||2020 estimate|
• Per capita
|Gini (2018)|| 39|
|HDI (2018)|| 0.947|
|Currency||Gassasinian Dollars (GSD)|
|Time zone||UTC-4 (Gassasinian Standard Time (GST)|
Gassasinia, officially the State of Gassasinia (Gassasinian: دولة الغساسينة) is a Sovereign State in Midwestern Thrismari on the the Margiric Gulf, located south of the Equator. Gassasinia is bordered by Mehrava to the east, and Basillund to the north. With an area of only ~75,000 km2, Gassasinia is considered one of the smallest and most densely populated countries in Thrismari. Gassasinia is notable for its' coalescence of varied cultures, religions and ethnic groups which have settled in Gassasinia's fertile lands throughout the country's history. Gassasinia is of significant importance to Abrahamic Religions, being the origin of Judaism and Christianity, and being home to numerous important Islamic religious sites.
The history of Gassasinia dates back to more than seven thousand years, to before recorded history. Prior to Arabisation, Gassasinia was home to a variety of different tribes and ethnic groups, including Phoenicians, Hebrews and Arameans. Throughout the ancient period, ancient Arabian tribes - including the eponymous Ghassanids - would settle within the country's northern regions. The Mount Ghassan region became a cradle for the rise of Christianity in pre-Islamic Gassasinia.
Subsequent territorial incursions by pre-Islamic Arab tribes, and later by Arabian Islamic caliphtes would further imprint a more Arabian influence into the lands of what is now southern Gassasinia, while invasions by ancient Mehravan empires throughout history imprinted their own Persian influence upon the country. Under Islamic rule, Gassasinia would become a major hub for science and trade during the Islamic Golden Age, until the fall of Caliphate rule lead to Gassasinia falling back into feuding Christian and Islamic kingdoms.
Between 1885 and 1891, the House of Maalouf fought a series of wars with Shadoveillian backing to unite the lands of what would become known of Gassasinia. In 1876, Gassasinia was instituted as a self-ruling protectorate of Shadoveil, with the major cities of Jabiyah, Iliya and Lawdada under direct Shadoveillian colonial control. In 1949, discontent between Gassasinia's mercantile elite lead to Gassasinia declaring independence and annexing Shadoveillian-controlled land.
Despite a relative lack of natural resources, and major socioeconomic tensions and instability during the 1970's, Gassasinia has rapidly into a highly developed country. Gassasinia's economy is considered a hub of banking and trade within Thrismari, with estimates suggesting that Gassasinian banks hold some of the highest reserves of gold per capita in the world. It is believed that Gassasinian Sovereign Wealth Funds hold in excess of $1 trillion worth of assets world-wide, making the Gassasinian sovereign wealth fund one of the largest in the world. Gassasinia's economy is characterised by strong Information Technology, Electronics and Synthetic Chemical sectors. Gassasinians enjoy some of the highest standards of living in the developed world, with amongst the most accessible and effective healthcare and educational systems in the world, with a tertiary education enrolment rate of 90% in 2020 and a second-language English proficiency rate of 90%.
Gassasinia is a liberal democratic unitary constitutional monarchy with a bicameral parliamentary government based on the Westminster system. Gassasinia is a member of the Anteria World Assembly, and maintains strong economic, technological and political ties with Mehrava, Bakyern and Encessia, along with the Thrismari Union.
- 1 Etymology
- 2 History
- 3 Culture
- 4 Politics
- 5 Geography
- 6 Economy
- 6.1 Taxation and Welfare
- 6.2 Companies
- 6.3 Science and Technology
- 6.4 Tourism
- 6.5 Transport
- 6.6 Energy
- 6.7 Healthcare
- 6.8 Education
- 6.9 Finance
- 7 Demographics
Gassasinia was named after the Kingdom of Gassasinia, a kingdom pre-dating the formation of Shadoveilian Marigicia. The Kingdom of Gassasinia was a former tributary state of the Mehravan Empire, and was descended from an ancient pre-Islamic Christian Arab tribe who had settled in ancient Gassasinia. When Marigicia was sold to Shadoveil, the new territories were unified by Gassasinia's king.
Gassasinia was often known in English as "Marigicia", after the Marigic Gulf.
When Gassasinia initially became independent, it was planned to be officially named the "State of Marigicia". However, this name was dropped in favour of the impromptu name "Gassasinia" when the constitutional monarchy was retained at the request of the prime minister.
-Originally populated by a mix of Paganistic and Christian Arabs, ancient "Canaanites" and Jews
-Christian House of Maalouf migrated from the deserts of modern day Gorabo in the 3rd Century, conquered lands and converted the local Pagans and some of the local Jews.
-Conquered by Muslims in mid 7th Century, many converted due to Islam for benefits
-Rebelled, House of Maalouf retook power in late 15th Century
-Deep ties formed with Shadoveil in 19th Century, English becomes secondary language of Christian elite
-On and off wars with Muslims until 1880s, when it became a protectorate of Shadoveil
Protectorate of Shadoveil
-Enforced religious equality between Jews, Christians and Muslims
-House of Maalouf client monarch of Shadoveil
-Earliest roots of prosperity
-Independence in 1949 under King Elias II
-Prosperity grows, and so does economic inequality
-On and off terrorist attacks until 1980s
-Prince Yousef becomes voice for change
Insurgency, Mass Civil Unrest
For quite some time before the 1970's, as Gassasinia's economy grew - and so did the divide between rich and poor. For decades, the muslim populace of Gassasinia had grown as the Gassasinian economy - driven by manufacturing and textiles exports - had grown, and this made much of the Christian populace - who had at one time dominated Gassasinia's demographics - very uncomfortable. However, despite religious divides - the main division in Gassasinia's civil unrest wasn't religion - in fact, many Christians and Jews were found within the ranks of the left-wing opposition. Furthermore, much of Gassasinia's Christian middle class were divided between support for more liberal ideals and support for the Christian right-wing, while much of the Christian working class supported left-wing groups.
In particular, the Gassasinian Worker's Labour Party - representing left-wing social democratic and democratic socialist interests - had grown substantially in support. From 1959 to 1972, the Labour Party had grown from a mere 150 members to almost a quarter of a million. Meanwhile, far-right and far-left paramilitaries illegally imported arms. Throughout the 1960's, Gassasinia saw frequent terrorism, rioting and assassinations committed by far-left and far-right paramilitaries. It was an open secret that these paramilitaries were associated with the ruling Christian Democratic Party and the Royal Police
The Insurgency in Western Gassasinia broke out in 1972 after a far-right paramilitary associated with the Christian Democratic Party assassinated the leader of the Labour Party, leading to an open declaration of hostilities by far-left paramilitaries. Although the far-left paramilitaries effectively completely failed to achieve the mass mobilization of the working class for the overthrow of the Gassasinian government they expected - many viewing the far-left and far-right paramilitaries as "just as bad as each-other", and a majority of opposition parties condemning extremist violence - preventing the conflict from escalating into all-out civil war, the ensuing conflict would still manage to claim the lives of as many as an estimated 2,500 deaths, with dozens of thousands injured by a combination of terrorist attacks, rioting and direct combat between far-left paramilitaries and pro-government forces.
they did manage to further wreak havoc upon Gassasinia's populace. Despite being well armed with firearms and explosives, far-left paramilitary groups were repelled from the urban areas of the country by the combined counterinsurgency efforts of the Gassasinian Armed Forces, and paramilitary counterterrorist units of the Royal Police Service. Within the first three months of the conflict kicking off, most far-left insurgent groups were brutally flushed out from the cities and into the Gassasinian mountains.
Despite the efforts of the Gassasinian Armed Forces and the Royal Police, and mounting casualties for the insurgents, security forces couldn't quite flush the insurgent forces out of the mountains due to the difficult terrain and local support from disadvantaged indigenous ethnic minorities and the lower classes who inhabited the mountains.
Furthermore, as counterinsurgency operations raged on, tensions grew between the Armed Forces and the Royal Police, along with their associated paramilitary organizations. The Armed Forces felt that the government unfairly favored far-right paramilitaries associated with the Royal Police. Additionally, the Gassasinian Army drew it's lower ranks from a diverse variety of ethnic, religious and economic backgrounds - meaning that while many soldiers despised the far-left paramilitary groups they were fighting, many soldiers disliked the far-right paramilitaries just as much even though they were supposedly fighting on the same side.
First Fair Elections
Despite military operations successfully pushing military groups from the lower-class slums of major Gassasinian cities into the mountains, they waged a guerrilla war which wore down the will of the Gassasinian elite. In mid 1975, Gassasinian citizens, working class and middle class, Christian and Muslim, came out into the streets of Jabiyah, demanding the resignation of Prime Minister Khoury, and the removal from power of the Christian Democratic Party.
As usual, police forces and paramilitaries were deployed to the streets to brutally beat down and suppress the protests, with the military on standby in-case of an escalation. Before long, these protests exploded into some of the worst rioting Gassasinia had seen yet, during which hundreds were arrested, thousands were injured and twelve killed. Rioters trashed pro-Christian Democratic Party businesses, set several police stations on fire and occupied the Gassasinian parliament for a week, between being pushed out by police forces.
Two weeks into the rioting, King Elias II flew out to Bakyern for treatment on the 19th of November, leaving his son Prince Yousef II to his duties. Meanwhile, the Supreme Court found Prime Minister Khoury guilty of numerous counts terrorist activities, human rights abuses and abuse of power. A power struggle between the courts and the police ensued as police refused to carry out court orders.
On the 23rd of November, the 221 Regiment of the 1st Mechanized Infantry Division marched on the parliament and arrested the Prime Minister on orders of the Supreme Court. Subsequently, using his reserve powers, Prince Yousef II dissolved parliament and called up 50 Members of Parliament each from the Social Liberal and Progressive Party, the Unionist Labour Party and the Conservative Party were instituted into parliament, and a provisional government was formed by prime minister Rita Ayanampudi.
The unelected Provisional Government ruled from 1975 to mid 1979, drafting a new constitution and laying the foundations for peace and democratic rule. About a month after the coup, the Lawdada Accords was signed which saw the discontinuation of paramilitary actions, with an agreement to disarm by 1989.
Gassasinian culture is reflective upon the wide variety of peoples and empires that have inhabited its' lands throughout history - ranging from the numerous pre-Arabic Canaanite tribes that lived there - including Hebrews, Phoenicians and Arabians, early Arab settlers and tribals, the Christian Al-Yaman tribe of Gorabo, the Islamic Caliphate of Gorabo and most recently - the Anglophone empires. Modern Gassasinian culture is derived from a wide variety of influences, both Arabic and foreign. Furthermore - especially amongst upper-class Christians, there is a notable trace of Anglophone influence owing to the historical affinity amongst the Gassasinian upper-classes for Christian civilizations in contrast with other Arab, Islamic civilizations. Despite religious differences in modern Gassasinian society, Gassasinians still have more in common than they have differences. Alongside influence from past civilizations and empires, Gassasinian culture also has hints of Mehrani influence owing to Mehrani settlement, past and present.
Mdern Gassasinian society has a liberal view on many issues such as LGBT+ Rights and Women's Rights. Gassasinian law makes discrimination, and inflammatory or hateful speech directed against religions, ethnic groups, races, sexual orientations, genders and gender identities illegal, while upholding an expectation of equal treatment.
Gassasinia has been home to significant strife mainly amongst the lines of economic class in the past, which gave fuel to the 1972-1975 Insurgency in Western Gassasinia. While policies instituted during the 1980's have eased conditions for the working class and grown a sizable middle class, there still remains significant issues with income inequality.
Clans are a significant aspect in Gassasinian society, and are generally passed down patrilineally - albeit in recent years in some cases kinship has been increasingly passed down through matrilineally. Loyalty to one's clan and family is very important in Gassasinian families, including the expectation of nepotism - to provide employment for one's family members - especially within upper-class Christian clans, although the government has worked to fight this expectation of nepotism, such traditions still remain one of Gassasinia's remaining obstacles to further social and economic progress. Furthermore, parenting in Gassasinia doesn't end when one reaches the legal age of majority but rather until one's children move out or get married.
While it was common to move out of one's home after turning 18 during the late 1980's through to the early 2000's, in recent years, Gassasinians have increasingly reverted to living with their parents well into their thirties, until they can secure home-ownership or marriage owing to increasing costs of buying a house.
Gassasinia has a five-day weekday, which runs from Saturday to Sunday, owing to Sunday's holy significance to Christians and Jews. Furthermore, on Friday, many schools and businesses either close early or give a 2 hour lunch break to allow for Muslims to attend prayer. As of current, Gassasinia has a 38 hour average work-week. In early 2020, the Ministry of Labour announced its' intention to reduce working hours to about 21 hours a week by the end of the 2020's.
Much of Gassasinian media is imported from other nations, particularly of Thuadian origin. This media is generally broadcasted dubbed in English, with Gassasinian-language subtitles.
Well-known - and well-hated - is the Media Ratings Board. The Media Ratings Board is responsible for age-rating and approving media - ranging from video games, to music, to movies. The Media Ratings Board is well-known for its' stringent regulations controlling inappropriate and offensive material. Ratings in Gassasinia include...
- Family - Generally family-appropriate for all ages, with bloodless and mild displays of violence at max.
- 15+ - Appropriate for teenagers, with mild displays of blood and violence, non-sexual displays of mild nudity, mild and vague references to drugs, non-abusive alcohol usage,
- 18+ - Media appropriate for adults with sexual themes, explicit display of drugs and drug-usage, extreme violence and blood, alcohol abuse and discrimination.
It is very easy for materials to be rated 18+. Movies which are 18+ are subject to certain controls - they cannot be screened on television except between 9 PM and 5:30 AM. Furthermore, they are subject to strongly enforced rigid age restrictions for purchase and display in cinemas. Certain exemptions for strictly educational purposes allow such media which may be rated for higher ages to be rated more liberally.
Copyright law in Gassasinia is strongly enforced - and media is no exception. Media piracy websites are quickly shut-down. An unusual exception is physical counterfeits of media sold in markets in poorer neighbourhoods - which seem to often be looked over by police patrols. Many lower-income Gassasinians rely on these physical counterfeits for entertainment, as often they cannot afford to pay for legitimate copies.
Gaming in Gassasinia has been popular since the late 1980's, when arcades started to appear in Gassasinia and gaming became a popular hobby for middle-class children. Gassasinia is home to several notable development and publishing companies involved in the gaming industry, including ARCOM, Bariq Games and Liwa Software. Along with most common contemporary gaming genres, western role-playing games and strategy games have typically been popular, owing to the rise of computer gaming in the 1990's when computers became common in many households, and gaming became available to those who could not afford game consoles.
Gassasinia has a legally-binding well-enforced age-rating system which controls games and movies containing offensive and inappropriate material, such as drug usage and extreme violence. Gassasinia has in the past refused to certify certain games, but owing to the rise of digital distribution, censorship in media has lightened in recent years.
Television, Theatre and Film
The GRT was formed in 1968 as the public broadcasting service of Gassasinia, responsible for providing entertainment and news through television and radio, along with other media services. Funded mostly through television licenses, the GRT is notable for several famous television shows and movies, well-known across the Arabic-speaking world and even translated into English. Furthermore, GRT is also well-known for its' news broadcasts, which generally present a rather truthful and reliable - albeit generally somewhat Liberal slanted - perspective of events and are broadcasted around the world in a variety of foreign languages.
Gassasinian cinema dates back to the 1920's, pioneered by the likes of Michel Awad, a businessman considered the father of Gassasinian cinema, who pursued directing movies out of personal interest and formed the first Gassasinian movie production company with his own personal income, well-known for his magnum opus, the 1941 movie Labourer, a movie examining the positives and negatives of life for Gassasinia's growing urban working class.
Public holidays in Gassasinia are generally a mixture of Christian, Muslim and Jewish religious events, along with secular holidays which acknowledge certain events within the nation's history. The most major Gassasinian secular holiday is Independence Day which celebrates the declaration of independence of Gassasinia from Shadoveil on the 1st of March 1949.
Gassasinia is a three-party constitutional parliamentary monarchy with universal suffrage, subject to the 1979 Constitution of the State of Gassasinia. Under the 1979 Constitution, the parliament is made up of two houses. The Lower house, the House of Representatives, which legislates on laws and votes to send them to the House of Peers, the upper house which finally criticises, votes on and amends legislation from the lower house before it is put into law, and is also responsible for scrutinising and criticising the government's policies and actions. The House of Representatives elected based on a first-past-the-post system, and MPs are elected from 150 constituencies.
Elections for the House of Representatives and local Councils are held every 4 years.
Members of the House of Peers are not elected. Instead, they are voted on by the Privy Council, which is mainly made up of prestigious politicians, experts and judges. Members of the House of Peers are required to relinquish their membership in any political parties, as Peers are supposed to be impartial to party bias. Most members of the House of Peers are prestigious politicians, technical experts, lawyers and judges. Peers are supposed to "Set aside all biases and prejudices in the name of impartially scrutinising the government and helping to secure the Liberal Democratic order of the nation." The House of Peers was formerly filled with nobles before parliament was suspended in 1979, only being reformed 4 years later in 1979.
Although the elections process in Gassasinia is generally considered technically free, it can be noted that media in Gassasinia often exerts a pro-government slant and has been known to attack and discredit opposition figures. The government has been accused of using broad defamation and anti-extremism laws to at times shut down dissent.
The Prime Minister, who is the executive Head of Government and chooses the ministers who form the Cabinet, is generally chosen from the leader of the party with the most seats. If the largest party fails to gain a majority in Parliament, it will form a coalition with one or more parties. Generally the second largest party in this coalition government will be chosen as the Deputy Prime Minister, who is essentially the 2nd in line of succession.
There are three main parties in Gassasinia: the Liberal Party, the Labour Party and the Conservative Party. As of current Gassasinia is currently host to a coalition lead by the Liberal Party with Labour Party support after the 2019 election and the rise of the left-wing in Gassasinia in response to what is seen as an unfair wealth gap and disadvantages for the working class. Before 2019, Gassasinia had been considered by many to be a dominant-party system, with the Liberal Party having held power for most of Gassasinia's history between 2019 and 1979.
The government of Gassasinia is the Government of Gassasinia, which legally derives its' power from the constitution and the execution of the people's will through Parliament, rather than from the crown like in most constitutional monarchies.
|Party Colour||Party Name||MPs||Ideology|
|Social Liberal and Progressive Party (LIB)||55||Centre - centre right wing, liberalism and social progressivism|
|Unionist Labour Party (LAB)||45||Centre-left - left wing, Social Democracy and Democratic Socialism|
|People's Action Party (CON)||30||Centre-right - right wing, Conservatism|
|Office Name||Head of Office Position Name||Head of Office||Political Party||Agencies|
|Prime Minister's Office||Prime Minister
Deputy Prime Minister
|Ministry of Labour||Minister for Labour||Rahar Khayyam Mohammed||LIB||
|Ministry of Finance and Economy||Minister for Finance and Economy||Marisa Hayek||LIB||
|Ministry of Defence (MINDEF)||Minister for Defence||George Aoun||LIB|
|Ministry for Health and Social Care (MHSC)||Minister for Health and Social Care||Hamida Naaji||LAB||
|Ministry of Culture and Media||Minister for Culture and Media||Rashad Bousaid||LAB||
|Ministry for the Interior||Minister for the Interior||Jamal al-Din Mus'ad Amjad||LIB||
|Ministry of Foreign Affairs||Minister for Foreign Affairs||Mikhail Ghosn||LIB||
|Ministry of Education and Youth Affairs||Minister for Education and Youth-Affairs||Elias Saad||LIB||
|Ministry of Justice (MoJ)||Minister for Justice||Nasser Karimi||LIB||
|Ministry of Transportation||Minister for Transportation||Tarik Arif||LAB||
|Ministry of Science and Technology||Minister for Science and Technology||Petrov Acharya||LIB||
|Ministry for Energy, Environment and Water Management (MEEWM)||Minister for Energy, Environment and Water Management||Mikhail Petrosyan||LIB||
|Ministry for Information Technology, Communication and Information (MITCI)||Minister for Information Technology, Communication and Information||Basel Badour||LIB||
|Ministry for Agriculture||Minister for Agriculture||Adar Uki||LAB|
|Ministry for Human Rights and Equality||Minister for Human Rights and Equality||Saba Bagherzadeh||LIB||
|Speaker of Parliament||Speaker||Aden Meir||IND|
Legal System and Courts
The Gassasinian legal system is a common law system based on [ENGLISH] law, made up of mainly two branches: criminal law and civil law. Each branch is subject to their own specific courts and procedures. Gassasinian law is based both on the legislation passed by Parliament, and case law derived from interpretations of the law from previous judges based on their reasoning and logic.
There are many levels of courts in Gassasinia, which are overseen by the Supreme Court of Gassasinia, the highest court of appeal in Gassasina, made up of prestigious judges who hear cases of constitutional importance, or cases which affect the general populace as a whole.
Magistrates and judges are not chosen by the Executive but rather by the Judiciary itself. Local magistrates are appointed by local Advisory Commissions who appoint Magistrates to be appointed by the Lord Justice of Gassasinia. This system, while criticised as elitist and undemocratic by some, is said to keep the courts of Gassasinia meritocratic, impartial and unbiased.
[[File:|right|thumbnail|500px|A map of Gassasinia, labelled corresponding to the region table.]] Gassasinia is made up of six regions along with a metropolitan area which houses the capital of Jabiyah. Regions are divided by counties, which are further divided by municipalities. Most authority for local government lies with local municipal government, while municipalities often form voluntary Communities with other municipalities to coordinate policies, infrastructure and education amongst municipalities.
- County / Metropolitan Area
|Jabiyah Metropolitan Area||4,500,000||Jabiyah City||JY1|
|State||Relations Status||Visa Requirement||International Agreements||First Relations||Ambassador||Relations Description|
|Mehrava||Very Positive||No||Free trade, visa-free travel||1992||Lukas Lahad||Mehrava has been a strong partner of Gassasinia since the 1990's, and both nations share defence and economic treaties. Gassasinia is home to a sizeable Mehrani minority, and many Mehranis at home work for Gassasinian companies, for whom Mehrava is a favourite for outsourcing, owing to its' mixture of lower labour costs and decent degree of industrialisation. Gassasinia also imports significant quantities of petroleum and natural gas from Mehrava.|
|Bakyern||Very Positive||No||Free trade, visa-free travel||1949||Joseph Francis||Bakyern and Gassasinia have strong economic, technological, political and military ties to each other. Gassasinia and Bakyern have been known to frequently cooperate on an international scale, and often share expertise.|
|Encessia||Positive||Yes||Trade deal||1949||George Francis||Bakyern and Gassasinia have strong economic, technological, political and military ties to each other. Gassasinia and Bakyern have been known to frequently cooperate on an international scale, and often share expertise.|
|Riamo||Positive||Yes||Trade deal||1949||TBA||Iden and Gassasinia are both free-market liberal democratic countries in western Thrismari on the Marigic Gulf. Iden is a significant source of agricultural produce for Gassasinia.|
|Qui Latine||Negative||Yes||None||1949||TBA||Gassasinia and Qui Latine engage in trade owing to regional connections. However, the Gassasinian government has withdrawn military contracts to Qui Latine due to the country's invasion of Tanourian lands, considered illegal by Gassasinia.|
|Hadian Empire||Very Negative||Visa Refused||Economic Embargo||N/A||N/A||Gassasinia does not recognise the Hadian Empire and considers the Hadian National Socialist Party a terrorist group.|
|Acriae||Very Negative||Visa Refused||Economic Embargo||N/A||N/A||Gassasinia does not recognise the Acriae and considers Acriae a threat to world peace due to its' fascistic governmental system, the country's militaristic hostility towards its neighbours and attempt to spread fascism, and it's mass killing of Kistolian civilians.|
Gassasinia generally has a very strong track record with human rights, and is considered a Full Democracy. Gassasinia's judicial system is notable for being independent and impartial, and there are legal protections establishing the presumption of innocence. Furthermore, the Independent Commission on Human Rights is a government commission tasked with ensuring that government agencies act in line with international and national human rights laws, in particular those set out in the Gassasinian Constitution, the Equality Act of 2003, and the Human Rights Act of 2001. Furthermore, the Royal Gassasinian Civil Liberties Organisation is one of the largest political organisations in Gassasinia outside of the main three political parties, and hires hundreds of lawyers to pursue cases pertaining to human rights, along with raising awareness about one's legal rights and campaigning for the expansion and protection of human rights law.
Since 2003, Gassasinia has recognised same-sex civil partnerships. Furthermore, in 2013, Gassasinia's parliament voted 102-9-39 to legally acknowledge same-sex marriage, becoming the only country within the Midwestern Thrismari Co-operation Organization to recognise same-sex marriage. Under the equality Act of 2003, Conversion Therapy is strictly illegal. Under Gassasinian law, one can legally change their gender without necessarily having to undergo reassignment surgery before a Gender Recognition Panel made up of medical practitioners, psychologists and lawyers. Furthermore, anyone over the age of 18, or 16 with consent from the Gender Recognition Panel, can undergo sex reassignment surgery.
Gassasinia has strong legislation to protect individuals from discrimination on the basis of disability, race, gender, economic status, marital status, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation or religion, Furthermore, Gassasinia has strong laws in the areas of worker's rights and accommodation for those with disabilities. Much of this legislation was passed during the 1990's, before being finally succeeded by the Equality Act of 2003 which combined all this legislation into one act intended to modernise equality law, while labour laws were accumulated into the Worker's Rights Act of 1999. Gassasinia protects Freedom of Association under the 1979 Constitution.
While free-speech is protected under the 1979 Gassasinian Constitution, there are specific speech - in particular, inflammatory, threatening, offensive, pro-terrorist or hate speech - which are specifically not protected, and have been banned by the Unconstitutional Parties and Symbols Act of 1984 and the Threatening and Hateful Speech Act of 1979. Gassasinian inflammatory and hate speech laws have been subject to criticism. While rare, there have been high-profile cases where people have been prosecuted for making offensive jokes. Furthermore, there are accusations that despite attempts to ensure equal opportunities, those from a lower-class background and women are still subject to economic disadvantages.
Several political ideologies in Gassasinia - notably, Ba'athism, Fascism, Leninism, Zionism and Islamism - are not allowed within the Gassasinian political system. Those who publicly associate with such ideologies are disqualified from holding government office. Furthermore, symbols representing such ideologies, such as the Hammer and Sickle are illegal outside of "artistic, scientific, academic, educational and historical purposes" under the Unconstitutional Parties and Symbols Act of 1984. People who follow such ideology are frequently refused entry and even permanently banned from entering Gassasinia.
Gassasinia is considered to be a surveillance state. Requests made under the Freedom of Information Act 1979 have revealed that the National Security Council, a co-operative service between National Police and Defence Agency, has maintained a system of mass surveillance, maintaining a centralised intelligence database and monitoring communications without warrant, an act considered a grave violation of the Right to Privacy by many. There is currently several lawsuits submitted against the Gassasinian government over the mass surveillance system. In recent years, the Constitutional Protection Department of the National Police has attracted criticism for what is considered by many to be heavy handed enforcement of censorship laws against individuals considered to hold views contrary to liberal democratic and constitutional values.
Often described as a Nanny State, Gassasinian laws and regulations are known to intrude on people's private lives. Gassasinian laws strongly regulate unhealthy foods and drinks, substances such as cigarettes and alcohol, inappropriate and offensive media, and car ownership.
As of 2020, Gassasinia has an army of 80,000 active-duty soldiers with 45,000 reservists on stand-by who can be deployed as needed to fill demands. Equipped with 400 tanks and 528 infantry fighting vehicles, along with 282 combat aircraft, the Gassasinian Defence Force is well-equipped, well-trained and well-organised. Military spending in Gassasinia is at about 3.24% of the national GDP.
Since the 1980's, the Gassasinian Defence Force has been highly active in foreign deployments for peacekeeping and humanitarian operations. A Quick Deployment Force is kept ready to be mobilised with Gassasinian Royal Air Force C-5 Galaxy and C-17 airlift planes to provide technical help, humanitarian aid and peacekeeping forces across the world.
Gun laws in Gassasinia are regulated by the Firearms Act of 1981, which replaced the Controlled Arms Act of 1965, and legislates the production, carrying and ownership of firearms, ammunition, explosives and firearms parts.
Firearms ownership is based on a may-issue basis by which the Firearms Regulatory Agency takes in requests for a firearms licence and reviews them, and often rejects licences requested by those who are considered to hold extremist political views.
To acquire a firearms licence in Gassasinia, one must attend firearms training lessons, undergo thorough vetting and prove that they can properly keep the weapon stored safely and securely. Applications for firearms must be supported by two referees of good legal standing who have known the person for at least three years, along with a licensed armourer. In Gassasinia, there are several levels of licensing that one can acquire from the Firearms Regulatory Agency. The Firearms Regulatory Agency retains the right to deny any firearms licence for any reason provided they have a basis suggesting that said person could be a potential threat.
- Level 1 "Tactical Arms" Licence: A Level 1 licence allows you to acquire firearms, including semi-automatic rifles and handguns. These firearms must be locked and stored at a licenced shooting club maintained by a licensed armourer.
- Level 2 "Sporting Arms" Licence: A Level 2 licence allows one to acquire simple hunting weapons such as bolt-action rifles, hunting shotguns and low-calibre semi-automatic rifles such as the .22LR Ruger 10-22 which can be kept at home and taken out into the wilderness for sporting purposes. Level 2 licences are subject to yearly house-inspections by GNP to ensure that firearms are kept securely. To acquire a Level 2 licence you have to have held a Level 1 licence for at least five years.
- Level 3A "Armourer" Licence: A Level 3A licence allows one to handle any variety of armaments held by an organisation for "historical, media or commercial purposes". Level 3A licenses requires thorough vetting by the Firearms Regulatory Agency, and requires one to work for an organisation which is certified to handle such arms, such as an armoury or museum. Businesses handling such arms are required to closely control and log the use of arms. Level 3A Licences only have to be renewed every ten years, but cost $25,000 to acquire. Generally, at least part of this expense is handled by the business for which one works.
- Level 3B "Security" Licence: A Level 3B licence allows one to carry firearms for government-approved business purposes, such as private security for trade ships in dangerous waters. Such licences require extensive training and vetting to acquire, and it is expected that firearms are closely controlled by the organisation for which they are authorised.
- Level 3C "Self-Defence" Licence: A level 3C licence allows one to possess and carry non-lethal self-defence weapons, such as pepper ball guns, tazers and batons. Level 3C licences require a yearly $10,000 licensing fee. Level 3C licences may be declined or revoked for up to five years for even summary offences.
The marketing of firearms is highly restricted. Marketing imagery and language is expected to be "practical and to the point", and should not be "inflammatory, violent, fantastical or heroic".
Level 1 and 2 licences cost $3,000 and $7,500 respectively, and must be renewed every three years. Furthermore, each firearm owned is taxed at $1,250 each per year and all purchases of munitions and arms are subject to a sales tax of 35%. All purchases of controlled munitions equipment must be logged on a database maintained by the Firearms Regulatory Agency.
License holders convicted of criminal acts can be temporarily - or even permanently in some repeated or severe cases - have their arms licence seized and all munitions equipment seized by police.
The largest Gassasinian firearms enthusiast community is the National Rifle Association of Gassasinia, also known as the NRA. The self-stated purpose of the National Rifle Association of Gassasinia is to "promote sport shooting, to educate about safe and lawful usage of firearms, and to organise a community for shooting hobbyists in Gassasinia."
Private Military Industry
Under Gassasinian law, private military companies are allowed to hold military hardware - including armoured vehicles and combat aircraft - given that they submit to restrictions by the Gassasinian government and are kept under cautious watch by the Ministry of Defence. Furthermore, Gassasinian mercenaries are allowed to fight in foreign wars for money - albeit they are not allowed to support factions committing heinous warcrimes, or terrorist groups. However, most Gassasinian private military industry is rather mundane - running armed security for ships, aircraft and other vulnerable assets.
The most notable Gassasinian private military company is the SPECRES Group. Formed by veterans of the Insurgency in Western Gassasinia, the company is notable for providing a wide variety of services ranging from experienced fighter pilots to mundane security consultancy.
The Gassasinian National Police is the police force of Gassasinia. Formed in 1978 by the National Police Act, the National Police replaced the Royal Police, who were accused of supporting far-right paramilitaries and police brutality.
In spite of the abusive actions of its predecessor, the Royal Police, today the Gassasinian National Police is recognised as one of the most professional and responsible police forces in the region, upheld by adherence to policing by consent principles, a strong and independent judiciary which seeks to fairly prosecute and investigate police abuses and training to ensure professionality in officers, along with the promotion of a professional and approachable public image. The National Police is also known for its' policy of not regularly arming its' constables since it was founded in 1978.
Civil Defence Force
The Gassasinian Civil Defence Force is the government agency responsible for firefighting, rescue and emergency medical response in Gassasinia, along side a variety of local volunteer groups which supplement Civil Defence Force response.
Gassasinia's climate is mainly characterised by a Mediterranean-esque climate featuring long, moderately hot, dry summers and cold, rainy and snowy winters, with the mountainous arid Qaroun Desert in the north.
hereas much of Gassasinia's geography is hilly and mountainous, with a few plains in the lower portion of the country. To the south-east of the country are fertile plains, whereas the north and west is characterised by hilly and mountainous terrain. The highest peak in Gassasinia's northern mountainous region is Mount Ghassan, a snowy mountain which from which Gassasinia lends its' name, and measures in at about 3,100 kilometres above sea level. Gassasinia is famous for its vast forests of Cedar trees, which are the national tree of Gassasinia.
Gassasinia's economy is a developed social market economy dominated by the services economy, featuring a highly competitive free market, a high rate of innovation, straight-forward and business friendly regulations, and a relatively low level of corruption. The main exports and industries of Gassasinia include electronics, computer software and hardware, pharmaceuticals, phosphates and refined metals. Before the 1970's, Gassasinia was considered an emerging economy and many predicted that Jabiyah would become a major business centre by the 1980's. However, this was partially disrupted by the outbreak of the Insurgency in Western Gassasinia in 1972. Regardless, after the end of the Insurgency in 1975, the country quickly got back onto the road of recovery, and since the 2000's, Gassasinia has become a major trade and economic centre within the region.
Although located in the [MIDDLE EAST], Gassasinia was thought to be mostly devoid of significant natural resources other than phosphates. As such, Gassasinia was forced to work hard to build up a diverse, industrialised economy with a well-educated population. Although Christian populace of Gassasinia is better off economically than the Muslim populace, it is generally agreed that in the past and even after the liberalisation period of the late 1970's, Gassasinia was at least partially built upon the backs of cheap labour from the lower class, composed disproportionately of immigrants and Muslims. Most economists put the transition from an emergent developing economy to a developed economy around the late 1980's to the early 1990's.
As of 2020, Gassasinia has an unemployment rate of 4%. Although generally considered a high-income country, Gassasinia has a history of stark economic inequality, and despite the measures instituted in the 1980's meant to even the disadvantage between the poor and privileged, even today Gassasinia suffers from income inequality.
Gassasinia has strong trade relations with Bakyern, Mehrava and New Sebronia, amongst other developed nations. Gassasinia is home to a wide variety of modern high-tech industries including: Computer hardware and software, electronics, fruits and vegetables, communications equipment, optical equipment, ship-building, precision and scientific equipment, tourism, medical equipment and technology, refined materials, phosphates, metallurgy, plastics, textiles and chemical production. On the other hand, Gassasinia's main imports are fossil fuels - particularly diesel and petroleum, along with natural gas, raw metal ores, motor vehicles, foodstuffs, meat, miscellaneous raw materials and consumer goods.
Gassasinia is home to a moderate variety of major international and regional businesses including Zhayed Heavy Industries, Hacohen Microsystems, DCC Digital Systems, MEDTEK Health Solutions, GSM Heavy Industries, JT Communications, SuperSouq Supermarkets, BlueCross Pharmaceuticals, amongst others.
Gassasinia is a trade partner of Gorabo and Mehrava, who both have strong economic ties with each other and Gassasinia and form the single market of the Midwestern Thrismari Cooperation Organization. Mehrava is an important business partner of Gassasinia, giving Gassasinian companies a large cheap labour and industrial base, while Gorabo is important for its' role in providing for Gassasinia's energy and commercial needs.
In recent years, Gassasinia has started to focus on building its' relations with the small nation of Sofrezia, which lies across the Sofrezi Channel from Gassasinia.
With the recent election of the Labour Party to a coalition with the Liberal Party, the Ministry of Economic Affairs plans to build a National Co-Operative Business Fund to provide government investment into worker-run co-operatives.
Until around the mid 1990's, Gassasinia was a wide-scale manufacturer. However, nowadays, much of manufacturing by Gassasinian companies has been outsourced to cheaper countries as Gassasinia became a higher income country, inflating costs of labour. Nowadays, most Gassasinian manufacturing is outsourced to Mehrava and Neferheim where labour costs are much lower.
The currency of Gassasinia is the Gassasinian Dollars ($GSD), with a value of about $1 GSD to $0.20 ACU.
Taxation and Welfare
Gassasinia's taxation and welfare system is based mainly upon economically liberal values, which aim to provide a social safety-net for the poorest of families while also encouraging self improvement, economic development and minimising unnecessary bureaucratic processes.
This unique system of liberal social welfare and taxation is based on the ideas promoted by key liberal economists throughout the 1950's and 1960's, including the Liberal Economic Forum, a Gassasinian think-tank that emerged in the 1920's amongst economists in Jabiyah. Throughout the 1980's, the Liberal Economic Forum heavily influenced the Liberal government's reforms of Gassasinia's complicated, inefficient and often corrupt taxation and welfare policies, which are argued to have propelled Gassasinia's rapid development during the 1980's.
Mandatory Provident Fund Board
Each Gassasinian citizen and permanent resident has a Mandatory Provident Fund Account which is managed by the Mandatory Provident Fund Board. This system is intended to reduce the spending impact of state welfare while encouraging saving, long-term planning and ensuring a social safety net. This mandatory saving account is restricted in what purposes money can be withdrawn for, and is paid by a 20% contribution paid both by an employee and their employer.
The Mandatory Provident Fund Account is made up of three funds, which can be used to pay for specified important expenses:
- Ordinary Fund - The Ordinary Fund is intended to be spent on housing, investment, insurance and education.
- Retirement Fund - The Retirement Fund is drawn upon once someone reaches the age of at least 62, and can be used to pay for investments and insurances relating to retirement.
- Healthcare Fund - The Healthcare Fund is drawn upon to pay for medical expenses, including insurance.
After one retires, one's Ordinary Fund and Retirement Fund are merged into a Post-Retirement Fund.
Along with each fund's intended purposes, money can also be fully or partially withdrawn if:
- The account holder is moving to a foreign country.
- The account holder renounces their own citizenship or residency.
- The account holder dies.
- The account holder is certified as temporarily or permanently unfit for work.
Provident Fund Supplement Scheme
Although generally effective, the Provident Fund Board System has been criticised for being ineffective at protecting the lower percentage of income-earners from financial trouble and poverty, due to the fact that it relies on the income one already gets.
In response, the Provident Fund Supplement Scheme was established in 2000 under a Labour Party government, which sees the government make supplementary payments into the Provident Fund Accounts of lower-income Gassasinians. The money paid into this account is equal to 5% of the difference between their income and their calculated National Income tax Living Wage Baseline.
Student Finance in Gassasinia is handled by the Mandatory Provident Fund Board. Gassasinian universities can charge maximum tuition fees of $25,000 per year, and students who cannot afford this can apply for a loan to cover some or all of this cost. This loan is then paid at a progressive rate of up to 9% for anyone who does not apply for Negative Income Tax payments.
Students have one opportunity to change their major within a year of starting their degree to still receive student loan. One must wait until their loan is paid off or cancelled before applying for another student loan, unless they are applying for further postgraduate studies.
Negative Income Tax
Gassasinia's welfare system is mainly a system of Universal Basic Income based on the Negative Income Tax model by which those who earn under a certain calculated basic living wage receive a stipend instead of being taxed. This system is one of the first Universal Basic Income systems in the world, and was implemented by the Provisional Government under the Household Welfare and Taxation Act 1976. This system requires one to be disabled, employed, seeking employment, a parent or in education.
This system is intended to reduce excessive bureaucratic processes while granting more freedom and responsibility to low-income earners.
The average National Income Tax Living Wage Baseline - the baseline calculated for an individual which decides the boundary between negative and positive tax is equivalent the median average income in Gassasinia - which is about GS$211,700. Anyone below the Living Wage Baseline is subject to a stipend worth 50% of their income tax, subject to further tax exemptions for being a parent.
Land Value Tax
A significant source of tax for Gassasinia's government is Land Value Tax, which is a property tax based on the unimproved value of land, rather than the improved value of land which includes infrastructure and buildings. This tax system is intended to incentivize development of land by costing those who sit on undeveloped plots of lands.
The responsibility for evaluation of land value lies with the Land Valuation Board. In some municipalities, land is mostly state-owned and rented out to private entities on long-term contracts. Land Value Tax and the Land Valuation Board were introduced in 1981 through the Land Valuation and Taxation Act 1981.
Gassasinia has a corporate tax rate of 18%. Critics argue that this corporate tax rate is not enough to ensure sufficient welfare to all, and that the corporate tax rate should be raised to accommodate for the income inequality in Gassasinia. New businesses started by those earning less than $500,000 a year are subject to a five-year 50% corporate tax exemption.
Income tax in Gassasinia is progressive, and ranges from 0% to 22%.
National Health Insurance Board
The National Health Insurance Board was formed by the Health Insurance Act 1977. This act reformed health insurance with the aim of making healthcare coverage affordable and accessible to the average citizen. Furthermore, it established the National Health Insurance Board to cover vulnerable individuals for whom health insurance might prove difficult to acquire.
Housing Grants Board
Communal Mutual Aid Groups
Another aspect of Gassasinian welfare is Communal Self-Help Groups, local government-guided organisations organised along municipal lines. These communal groups are funded by a token $10 payment from one's State Provident Fund Account, along with charitable donations and membership fees. These aid societies are lead by locally elected councils, who decide on a more localised level on how to allocate welfare and social services, and also serve to provide free or affordable financial and legal advice for their constituents.
The first such organisation was formed in 1972, and quickly gained recognition and support. The Community Mutual Aid Group Act 1984 established such groups in every municipality in the country with government support. By default, all citizens are a member of these groups.
While generally effective in smaller municipalities, such groups are often criticised in larger municipalities for being too large and thus less capable of their goal of efficiently allocating welfare and social support.
|Gassasinia, Gorabo, Sofrezia, Qazhshava|
Science and Technology
The largest airport in Gassasinia is Jabiyah International Airport, located about 20 miles south of the city centre of Jabiyah, is responsible for handling international flights in and out of Gassasinia. Furthermore, Lawdada Airport and al-Saamira Regional Airport are important airports within Gassasinia, providing internal air-flight services, and running services to near-by countries - notably Sofrezia, Mehrava and Neferheim.
Gassasinian energy companies are mainly private companies who are regulated by the Energy Regulatory Commission. Most of Gassasinia's energy is generated in gas and petrol plants, and as such Gassasinia is partially reliant on Gorabo for fossil fuels imports, with further imports of crude oil and natural gas coming from Mehrava and Sofrezia, which is then locally refined into petroleum.
In early 2020, the Gassasinian government set out the Renewable Energy Plan for 2045, an ambitious plan meant to bring Gassasinian energy production to 100% renewable and nuclear sources within 25 years.
Gassasinia's first nuclear power plant started construction in 1971. However, due to civil unrest and the Insurgency, it was only finished in 1985. Gassasinia's nuclear program is completely peaceful, albeit estimates suggest that - if needed - Gassasinia could produce nuclear arms within about a year.
Healthcare in Gassasinia is a mix of private and public universal health insurance, which is paid in a ratio of 50:50 by the private individual and their employer. By law, all Gassasinian citizens and residents are required to have health insurance which covers all healthcare costs. Most citizens of Gassasinia have private health insurance provided by a non-profit corporation. Alternatively, children, individuals in state care, elderly over 65 and those with pre-existing serious health conditions are provided for by Public Health Insurance with costs being scaled based on calculations of one's disposable income after taxes, bills and costs of living.
Private for-profit health-insurance is generally only paid for by some middle-class citizens, along with most upper-class citizens. Private for-profit health insurance generally tends to get one seen quicker for less-urgent treatments and check-ups as private for-profit health insurance pays out much more, and often allows greater access to private clinics who often have a top-tier standard of care and shorter waiting lists.
About three quarters of hospitals and GP Practice clinics are run by non-profit corporations, whereas one in five are state-run by the Ministry of Health, often in poorer areas. On the other hand, about five percent of clinics and hospitals are privately-owned for-profit businesses. However, most of them are for non-emergency medical services as for-profit private ownership of hospitals is highly restricted.
The most common non-profit health insurance providers in Gassasinia are the Gassasinian Red Cross Health Insurance Initiative, Green Shield and the Gassasinian Health Coverage Society. On the other hand, the most common for-profit health insurance providers are Fupa Health Insurance, Gassasinian Insurance Services and TopStandard Health Services.
Medical Licensing in Gassasinia is generally relatively relaxed. Compared to other countries, nurses can carry out certain basic medical care without the need for a doctor to be present.
Gassasinia has a very strong system of social support for vulnerable people, including disadvantaged children, the elderly, those with disabilities and the mentally ill. The Disability and Social Services Agency, formed under the Vulnerable People's Act 1999, is responsible for providing support for people recognised as "vulnerable, disabled or disadvantaged", including children from abusive families, children and adults with mental, intellectual and learning difficulties, people with disabilities, those addicted to harmful substances and the elderly.
The Disability and Social Services Agency in particular is involved in providing one of the most extensive and effective systems of special educational needs and supported living services in the world. As such, Gassasinia tends to have stronger outcomes for children with developmental disorders such as Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Passed in response to growing rates of obesity, the Public Health Act 2009 makes it a fineable offence for parents whose children are found to be dangerously overweight. Furthermore, the act makes it mandatory for businesses to provide at least two hours of exercise for all employees outside of mandated breaks. Additionally, the act sets limits to the weights and volumes that certain sugary and fatty foods can be sold in, and raises a special "Municipal Automotive Tax" for car owners who fail to provide a good reason they need a car as opposed to commuting by public transport, bike or on-foot, the proceeds of which are used to fund local public transport and health systems.
Even since the early 20th century, Gassasinia has had a relatively well-educated population. Between the 1900's and the 1970's, most education came from mainly Christian religious schools. This affinity for education in Gassasinia has carried on into the modern day, where Gassasinia has one of the highest rates of tertiary education in the world. Notably, Gassasinia pioneered computer literacy education during the 1980's and 1990's, as the Liberal Minister for Education Charles Kader recognised early-on the importance of Information Technology in the transforming technological world of the 1980's, which gave the kickstart that Gassasinia needed to pioneer the digital age.
Gassasinia's current education system dates back to the Educational Reform Act of 1977, which introduced standards for a standardised secular curriculum, with an education system based on helping students to succeed rather than pressure. The Gassasinian educational system is considered to have one of the most accessible educational systems in the world with strong services to support disadvantaged students, and a centralised student loan system to reduce financial strain upon poorer university students.
There are five levels of Gassasinian education: Primary, High School, College and University. Gassasinian children generally enter Primary School aged 5 in Year 1, and then leave for High School Year 7. Starting in Year 9, Gassasinian students start studying for the Standard National Educational Ordinary Levels, or O-Levels, which are a collection of mandatory and elective topics, and generally take their final exams in Year 11.
Upon graduating high school in Year 11, Gassasinian students will enter College, where they have the option of studying a range of courses specifically focused on between one to three subjects intended to prepare them for further study in university.
Gassasinian education is made up of five levels:
- Primary Education (5-11, Year 1 - Year 6)
- Middle Education (11-14, Year 7 - Year 8)
- Secondary Education (14-16, Year 9 - Year 11)
- Further Education (16-18, Year 12 - Year 13)
- Higher Education (18+)
Types of Gassasinian education facilities include...
- Universities - "University" generally refers to larger facilities which are dedicated specifically to Higher Education and research, but can occasionally offer further education. Universities tend to be private organisations (albeit some may be run by the local municipality) and are generally more prestigious, attracting students from across the country and even across the world.
- International Schools - International schools are generally private schools, which offer their education primarily in English, rather than in Gassasinian.
- State Schools - State schools are publicly-funded secular schools which are run by the local municipal government.
- Public Schools - Public schools are prestigious private schools, generally catering to middle and secondary education, which generally charge tuition fees rather than receiving government funding.
- Grammar Schools - Grammar schools are prestigious state or private schools, which admit students based on high-performance.
- Religious Schools - Religious schools are privately-owned schools which are run by religious organisations. Although religious schools are allowed to teach their religion, they have certain restrictions in that they cannot teach values which are "contradictory to tolerant and democratic principles". Furthermore, they are not allowed to discriminate on the basis of family and student religion, meaning that they cannot force their students to take part in religious activities or reject students on the basis of differing religion.
- College - "Colleges" are educational facilities often (but not always) run by the local municipal government, generally providing both Further and Higher education. Unlike universities, colleges are generally intended for a more localised area, and generally lack the prestige of large universities. "College" and "University" are often used interchangeably, in that some universities may call themselves a "college", but you will generally not see a college refer to itself as a "university" except when specifying their further education courses.
- Special Needs School - Special Need Schools are generally small schools, often run by charities or the Disability and Social Services Agency, which provide education for those with special educational needs and are assessed to have a better likely outcome compared to mainstream schools. Many special needs schools also provide part-time services for students with special educational needs attending mainstream schools.
English and Gassasinian language education is mandatory for all students in Gassasinia from primary school all the way up to university. As such, a majority of Gassasinia's populace is fluent in English, and are often exposed to English through media before they have even reached primary school.
Gassasinia is renown for its' universities, especially in the areas of IT and science. The Royal Jabiyah Technical Institute is considered one of the best universities to study IT and engineering topics at, while the Royal University of Jabiyah has educated some of the region's most successful scientists and doctors, and is considered one of the best countries in the world in the study of computer science.
Other well-known Gassasinian educational institutes include the Saint Ignatius University, Jabiyah Metropolitan University, al-Saamira University, Al-Nasfan School of Economics and Business and the University of Western Jabiyah.
As of 2020, it is estimated that Gassasinia has a population of about 15 million. Furthermore, Gassasinia has a moderate population density of 200 people per kilometre squared, much of which is centred around the urban regions in coastal areas and on the shores of Lake Ghassan. The ethnic identity of Gassasinia has been historically debated, but has since been superceded by a predominantly civic nationalist identity which values Gassasinian national identity over ethnicity.
Gassasinia is home to major populations of immigrant and naturalised Mehranis, who started migrating to Gassasinia during the 1980's as the Gassasinian economy grew.
- Christianity 38%
- Islam 36%
- Judaism 10%
- Irreligion 9%
- Druze 2%
Since the turn of the millenia, irreligion in Gassasinia has grown significantly, particularly amongst younger generations. As such, there is no longer any majority religious group in Gassasinia. Dating back to unification in 1891, Gassasinia was a secular state. Gassasinia has a universal single civil code for all persons regardless of religion.
Freedom of Religion is a guaranteed right within Gassasinia. Furthermore, hate speech and discrimination legislation which have most recently culminated in the Equality Act of 2003 forbid discrimination based on religion in areas including but not limited to employment, education, government position, pay and provision of both public and private services, while also making inflammatory and hate speech against religious beliefs a summary, misdemeanour, or - if serious enough - even felony offence.
The most common label for the largest ethnic group in Gassasinia is the vague term "Magiric". So-called "Magiric" people are predominantly a mixture of ancient peoples such as Phoenicians and Assyrians who lived predominantly in southern Gassasinia, who mixed with Arab settlers. The label "Marigic" is considered a relatively neutral umbrella term for the wide variety of different ethnic identities that Gassasinians identify themselves with, which include labels such as "Arab" and "Phoenician".
It is estimated that there is a worldwide Gassasinian diaspora of anywhere between 6 million, to as much as 42 million.
Since the nineties, more than a million Mehranis have migrated to Gassasinia, some for temporary work and others for permanent residency. Mehranis in Gassasinia compromise the largest foreign-born population in Gassasinia, and are predominantly found within the major cities of Gassasinia, especially the metropolitan area of Jabiyah.
Bedouins are a distinct group within Gassasinian society. Most of Gassasinia's approximately four hundred and fifty thousand Bedouin citizens live a semi-nomadic lifestyle, living a nomadic lifestyle during part of the year, and returning home for work - often agricultural work. However, a small portion of bedouins in Gassasinia still live a completely nomadic herding lifestyle. Similarly, Gassasinia is home to a small minority of about 50,000 gypsies, most of whom . Although the Gassasinian government has started to work towards supporting
The official languages of Gassasinia are English and Gassasinian. "Gassasinian language", as with the Marigic ethnic label, is a label applied to the standardised variety of Marigic Arabic spoken in Gassasinia. The Gassasinian Language features strong influences from English, Syriac, Mehrani and other languages historically spoken by Gassasinia's diverse population. Written Gassasinian is different but still mutually intelligible with Modern Standard Arabic. Likewise, Gassasinian language is highly mutually intelligible with most dialects of Arabic. It is estimated that about 66.5% of Gassasinia's population are native speakers of Gassasinian language, whereas another 27.5% of Gassasinians can speak Gassasinian as a secondary language.
A vast majority of Gassasinian Jews are a mixture of Mizrahi Musta'arabi and Mehrani Jews, who speak Mehrani, Judaeo-Aramaic and the Judeo-Gassasinian dialect which is sometimes written using Hebrew script. A small amount of towns and villages in Gassasinia recognise Ladino which is spoken by Gassasinian Jews of Thuadian and Riamese descent.
Syriac Language was the predominant language of Gassasinia during much of the medieval period. Some communities still speak Syriac for both historical and religious purposes.
The second most common language in Gassasinia is Mehrani, which is spoken mostly by Mehrani immigrant communities. Many first generation Gassasinian-Mehranis have at least a basic understanding of Gassasinian or English, and most second and third generation Gassasinian-Mehranis use Gassasinian as their main language.
English is the co-official language of Gassasinia, and all services are required to be rendered in English. Approximately 90% of Gassasinia's population speaks English as an additional language, as English has been required to conduct trade internationally and communicate with tourists. Furthermore, English used to be considered the secondary language of the Christian upper-class before the 1980's.
Gassasinian Standard English
Gassasinian Standard English is the standard dialect of English that is taught in Gassasinia. The Gassasinian Standard English standard was created in 1988 by the Ministry of Education to guide teaching of English towards proper spelling, grammar and pronunciation.
On paper, Gassasinian Standard English is based predominantly on traditional spelling, pronunciation and grammar, in practise the English spoke by most Gassasinians has a wide range of influences due to popular media influences.
It is not uncommon for Gassasinians to code-switch between English and Gassasinian. Although Gassasinian is the day-to-day language of life in Gassasinia, English is considered the secondary language of education, pop culture and business, and also serves of the primary language of international business and finance, and tourism. English-language in Gassasinia tends to have a prestigious and cosmopolitan connotation, and is often used in marketing of luxury goods.