National Territory of Ostry
Location of Ostry (red)
|Established||20 November 1994|
|Capital and largest city||Jakóbgard|
|• Type||Devolved government in a federal presidential republic|
|• Regional Administrator||Wacłôw Adómczik|
|• Legislature||Regional Assembly|
|• Total||310 km2 (120 sq mi)|
|• Density||70/km2 (180/sq mi)|
|• Total||$600 million|
|• Per capita||$27,739|
|• Total||$490 million|
|• Per capita||$22,940|
|ISO 3166 code||NV-OS|
|Official languages||Ostric, Navish|
Ostry (Ostric: Òstrskô; Navish: Ostrøy), officially the National Territory of Ostry (Ostric: Teritorium Nôródowe Òstrsczi; Navish: Ostrøys Nasjonalterritorium) is an island located in the Sturhlundic archipelago, as well as a national territory of the United Republic of Navack.
- 1 History
- 2 Geography
- 3 Government
- 4 Military
- 5 Economy
- 6 Population
- 7 Transport
- 8 Culture
- 9 See also
Historical documents point to Ostry being uninhabited prior to around 800 CE, although it is believed the island was known by Lhedwinic peoples as early as 600 CE, when the name Ǫstru appeared in Dalish maritime rolls. Despite this, no major attempt at habitation of the island occurred until the arrivals of the Ostrins.
The ancestors of the Ostrins, a Leonic people from possibly around modern-day Miersa, first came in contact with the island around 800 CE. Most historians attest that the first settlers on the island were most likely sailors and fishermen who, expanding from their traditional fishing grounds, had entered into the North Sea and set up a fishing colony at Ùkleja. As the population slowly grew by the influx of Leonic settlers told of stories of bountiful fishing grounds around the island, other settlements were set up at Zeloné Góra, Sômërz (modern-day Sommeren) and Sztãdra (modern-day Standra) by the end of the 11th century.
In the early decades of the 11th century, the Ostric settlements came in increased contact with the mainland Lhedwinic kingdoms of Glanodel and Navack, who had united and centralized as feudal states around a century earlier. Although peaceful relations and trading between the three occurred, most of this period was dominated by Lhedwinic raids on the islands, wishing to expand their reach into the North Sea. With Navish and Glanish influence on the far north increasing, the Ostric settlements formed the loose Ostric Confederation (Ostric: Òstrskô Kònfederacëjô) in 1080 in order to push back against the increasing raids. Although successful in the immediate decades in forming a barrier against Lhedwinic raiding, the devastating looting of Ùkleja and Sômërz in 1122 by Glanish mercenaries broke the confederation's weak stability. By the late 12th century, the Ostric settlements were often unprotected and ravaged yearly, with the most costly being the full-scale raiding and burning of Zeloné Góra in 1199 by Navish forces, forcing the island's elders to swear fealty to the King of Navack in the Treaty of Biôła Góra and beginning Navish occupation of Ostry and the far north.
Under the period of the first Navish occupation, often viewed as between 1199 and the declaration of the United Kingdom of Lhedwin in 1668, very little changed on the island. Ostry remained dominated by the local fishing industry, and no attempt to bring the region further into Navish administration was made, with the islanders situated on the periphery of the kingdom. A small peasant revolt, led by the presbyter Przemkò of Ostry over a fish tax levied by the royal administration, broke out in 1516, but it was quickly crushed within the year and the island remained relatively peaceful until the formation of the United Kingdom of Lhedwin.
Lhedwinic occupation and Oppgjørspolitikk
With the unification of the United Kingdom of Lhedwin in 1668, attention was brought to the kingdom's more periphery islands, including Ostry. By the late 17th and early 18th century, Lhedwinic military presence began to grow on the island, leading to the establishment of Jakóbgard as a naval base in the 1750s. During this time, there began a push towards the settlement of Navish people on Ostry as Lhedwinic control increased.
Originally pushed by the mainland government in order to populate the island and provide a stable administrative base, the Oppgjørspolitikk ("settlement policy") saw common land being enclosed and parceled off to Navish settlers, enticed by the cheap price of private property and the ability to involve themselves in the expanding far northern fishing industry and maritime trade. Up until the beginning of the 19th century, this policy was often seen as intrusive and beneficial, as the population on Ostry exploded and a fledgling economy emerged around the Lhedwinic navy. However, with the lack of common land to parcel up by the early 1800s, the Oppgjørspolitikk shifted from voluntary immigration to ethnic discrimination towards the native Ostric community. A 1820 decree by the central government authorized Navish officials the ability to forcefully remove Ostrins from their homesteads and property, to be replaced by Navish settlers from the mainland. By 1900, when the Oppgjørspolitikk was ended, around 10,000 Ostrins had been replaced, in part leading to emigration from the island to mainland Navack.
Along with the Oppgjørspolitikk came a period of repression towards the Ostric language and culture, emphasized by the dominant and sole use of Navish in trade and the lack of Ostric in any official capacity. In the first census taken on Ostry in 1850, 19.6% spoke Navish as a first language, increasing to 31.2% in the 1900 census. Poverty also plagued the island for most of the 19th century, especially among the Ostric community, which had been driven out of the fishing industry by mainly monopolies operated from the Lhedwinic mainland. The island's economy remained fragile, with a devastating depression occurring in the 1870s. The Oppgjørspolitikk also saw an inability to form Ostric cultural societies and clubs, although one, the Young Ostrins, was founded in Brestrand in 1887. Overall, Ostrins faced similar discrimination and repression by the Lhedwinic government as the Asuro-Lhedwinic people, helping form the beginnings of the Ostric nationalist and separatist movement.
During the Great War, Ostry became a key naval station for the Lhedwinic navy, and the island never faced occupation or attack from the Grand Alliance. However, the kingdom's policy towards forced conscription led to a riot in Jakóbgard in March 1899, although this was quickly crush by military forces. Following the collapse of the United Kingdom of Lhedwin and the signing of the Treaty of Châteauloup, Ostry officially came under control of the newly-reestablished Kingdom of Navack in 1900.
20th century to today
During the Navish Republican Revolution in 1919, Ostric republicans under the command of Jónek Nesz and Leo Kômiński were able to seize the naval base in Jakóbgard and the proclaim the Ostric Republic (Ostric: Repùblikô Ôstrskô) on 18 December. The republic allied with the mainland republican movement during the revolution, providing supplies and securing a northern passage for the revolutionaries. Following the republican victory over the House of Holsberg in April 1921, the Ostric provisional government initially refused re-annexation into Navack, sparking a blockade of the island on 15 May and the surrender of the Ostric Republic on 1 June. Jónek Nesz and his allies in the Ostric People's Party, set up during the revolution, fled to Glanodel while Ostry was officially absorbed into Navack and placed under the administration of the National Territory of Sturhlund.
Following the return of Navish control, Ostry faced a deep economic depression and mass emigration, with fifty-eight percent of the island's population leaving between 1920 and 1930. This, along with anger towards the annexation of the island, led to growing sentiment towards in independent Ostric republic, even through violent means. This reached a head in 1969 when the Kawiarniô Kômińskiégò in Jakóbgard was bombed by the separatist Ostric Freedom Army on 18 December, the 50th anniversary of the declaration of the Ostric Republic.
The ensuing Ostric Conflict saw the Ostric Freedom Army, with support from the in-exile People's Party, launch a guerrilla campaign against Navish authorities on the island, including public buildings. This included numerous car bombings, sporadic barricades placed in Jakóbgard, and in 1981 an attempt to seize Jakóbgard Airport and threaten secession. By 1994, over 350 deaths, mainly civilian, had occurred over the three decades of the conflict. Worried by the continuing lack of security on the island, the Navish federal government offered to negotiate with separatists during a conference slated for late 1994 in Gardrag. The resulting Gardrag Agreement, signed on 20 November, successfully ended the guerrilla campaign, with Ostry forming its own national territory with its own Regional Assembly and Administrator, as well as the designation of the Ostric language as official in the new territory.
Since the first regional elections in 1995, the separatist movement remains influential and notable in Ostry, with a crisis on the issue developing between 2008 and 2009.
Ostry is located in the eastern arm of the Sturhlundic archipelago, close to Glanish waters. The island, 310 square kilometres in size, is dominated by hills and mountains, which occupy the central portion of the island. Its highest peak, Biôła Góra, rests at 497 m (1631 ft) above sea level, and is considered a dormant volcano. Due to Ostry's hilly terrain, as well as its arctic climate, most of the island's population resides on the coast, primarily in the flatter southern portion. There are two main sources of water on the island, Lake Sóli and Lake Alicjë, both created by melting snow flowing from the mountain. Ostry, despite being by far the most populated island in the Sturhlundic chain, is considered one of the archipelago's smaller islands.
Ostry has a climate considered in between taiga and tundra, similar to other landmasses that straddle the north of Aeia. The island experiences very cold and long winters, normally from October to May, and colder, short summers. Ostry has few forested areas, mainly around the southern coast, and rarely gets large amount of sunshine due to the cloudy weather. During the height of the summer months, especially in July, Ostry experiences the midnight sun, or consistent 24-hour sunlight due to its latitude. This also comes with the opposing polar night during the winter months.
|Climate data for Ostry|
|Average high °C (°F)||−1
|Daily mean °C (°F)||−6
|Average low °C (°F)||−11
|Precipitation mm (inches)||54
|Source: Geological Association of Navack|
Ostry is a national territory of the United Republic of Navack, with the right of self-governance in most domestic affairs, although as a territory the local government receives less responsibilities than that of a state. The Ostric regional government is headed by the Regional Administrator, who is considered the head of government and main executive role on the island. They are elected by popular vote in a two-round system every four years, with a limit of two terms in office.
The unicameral Regional Assembly, elected concurrently with the Regional Administrator, is made up of fifteen members elected by proportional representation. The Assembly is in charge of maintaining the territory's budget, and proposing and voting in new laws, which are then approved by the Regional Administrator, who has the power of veto. All Navish citizens residing on the island over the age of 18 have the right to vote or run in Ostric elections. Due to the small population the Assembly represents, with a Member of the Assembly representing around 1,424 constituents on average, Ostric political culture is often considered highly based on personal relations and heavily influenced by local events and issues.
On the federal level, Ostry is represented by two seats in the Chamber of Deputies, and three seats in the Senate, being one of the least-represented regions in Congress. Ostry's status as a national territory and lack of representation has been a driving issue on the island, with a large portion of the population sympathetic to the idea of Ostry either getting further devolved powers or outright becoming independent from Navack, through various means.
Ostry is divided into nine municipalities (Ostric: gmina; Navish: kommune), consisting of the main settlement and, in the case of larger and more rural municipalities, smaller nearby hamlets and communities. The municipality is the only recognized administrative division on the island.
|Flag||Municipality||Population||Area km2||Density (Area km2)|
Ostry has been under Navish control since 1190 and the signing of the Treaty of Biôła Góra, and the island has a long and complicated history with the mainland over the centuries. Until 1919, Ostry was governed from the mainland, and no local authority was present. During the period when Navack was a grand duchy under the United Kingdom of Lhedwin (1668-1900), the Oppgjørspolitikk ("Settlement Policy") brought many Navish-speaking settlers to the island, often due to cheap land taken from ethnic Ostrins. The policy also saw the discouragement of using the Ostric language, and by the mid-19th century Navish dominated the island's political and business communities. The 19th century also saw large emigration from Ostry to mainland Navack after numerous collapses in the fishing industry and widespread poverty, especially within the Ostric community.
By the late 1800s, in response to a fear of losing their culture and language, a sizable nationalist movement emerged in both Ostry and the diaspora, with calls for an sovereign and independent republic. This growing sentiment reached a tipping point during the Navish Republican Revolution in 1919, when the anti-monarchist Ostric Republic was proclaimed. After the republican victory in 1921, Ostry, under Provisional President Jónek Nesz, initially refused to re-join Navack as other republican governments had, forcing the Navish military to forcibly annex the island that same year. The event is still controversial in Ostry today, and influences much of separatist movement. This anger lead to further radicalization of the independence movement, and from 1969 to 1994 the island was gripped by radical and violent guerrilla attacks by the Ostric Freedom Army, a nationalist paramilitary force that became well-known for bombings and assassinations of Navish authority figures.
In 1994, the Gardrag Agreement ended violence on the island and granted Ostry its own self-government. Since then, unionist parties have controlled both the office of Regional Administrator and the Regional Assembly except in-between 2007 and 2011, when the separatist People's and Freedom parties formed a coalition government on the promise of a referendum on independence in 2009.
The planned referendum caused a constitutional crisis over its legality, with Regional Administrator Jérzy Hagen and President Harald Brekhus vocally arguing over the issue during the latter's visit to the island in 2008, and the unionist opposition boycotting sessions of the Regional Assembly in-between December of 2008 and March of 2009. During the crisis, Hagen made various threats towards announcing a unilateral declaration of independence, a decision seen as effectively ending his political career. As 2009 passed with no referendum in sight, the promise was dropped by the government, who were later defeated in a landslide election in 2011 by the unionist Progessive League. At present, the issue of separatism and independence remains the main political divide in Ostry, with around half of the population stating they would vote for an independent republic, and half against.
As a national territory of Navack, Ostry is under the direct protection of the Navish Armed Forces. Continuing its historical role as a northern military post, the port of Jakóbgard often acts as a fueling station for Navish naval forces, and maintains close connections to the naval base in neighbouring Sturhlund. The territorial government of Ostry has no control over the armed forces stationed on the island, excluding a small police force of around 300 and joint control of the Coast Guard.
Although de jure under the jurisdiction of the federal government, the Ostric branch of the Navish Coast Guard is jointly operated by both the federal and territorial government, and considered the most permanent military force on the island. The Coast Guard maintains a fleet of around 25 patrol boats, the largest being the Czerwińc. The organization patrols Ostric waters daily, often in order to stop illegal fishing and whaling, especially in times of depletion, and inspecting imports to the island via sea. The Coast Guard also has a relatively sophisticated search-and-rescue operation, often working in conjunction with Sturhlundic and federal Coast Guards.
Ostry has an economy primarily based on fishing and tourism, and devotes much of its economic infrastructure to these industries. As a national territory of Navack, Ostry is de facto part of the Commonwealth of Democratic Nations, including its single market, allowing freedom of movement and trade. Ostry is also part of the Lhedwin Council by virtue of Navack. The island uses the skillingr as its currency, and generally has a high standard of living, although is considered comparatively lower then in mainland Navack.
Fishing and agriculture
Since the island's habitation, Ostry's economy has been dependent and dominated by fishing and whaling. The industry still dominates today, with the majority of the island's population employed in the sector. Fishing, primarily cod fishing, accounts for over seventy-five percent of the island's exports, and is the sole employer of note in many rural municipalities. Due to the domination of the fishing industry, and the growing issue of climate change disrupting traditional areas of heavy schools of cod, the industry is prone to regular collapse, often leaving the island in recession and increased emigration.
Whaling has also historically been important to the Ostric economy, although it has been declining sharply since the 1980s, due to a combination of expansion into other industries, and stricter regulations on whaling due to the endangered status on arctic whales in the region.
Tourism is the second-largest industry in Ostry, with the island seeing around 100,000 tourists per year, mainly within the months of May to September. Main points of interest include mainly the natural beauty of the island, as well as the town of Jakóbgard. Due to this, the town has developed a relatively sophisticated night life and culture despite its small size. The majority of tourists come from Navack proper, as well as elsewhere from Asura, mainly from Lhedwindic nations such as Glanodel. The main port of entry for tourists is Jakóbgard Airport, which handles the vast majority of visitors to the island. Recently, the Ostric government has begun to extensively promote eco-tourism and has heavily subsidized the local tourism industry, including discussion over designating Ostry's uninhabited areas as a nature park and reserve.
As of 2010, Ostry has a population of 21,630, with the vast majority living along the island's coast. The largest municipality, Jakóbgard, has a population of 6,235, 29% of Ostry's total population. Another 27,833 form a Ostric diaspora on mainland Navack, mainly in larger cities such as Brestrand and Berke. Since the 1970s, Ostry has suffered significant brain drain, with many higher-educated Ostrins leaving the island for better living standards and higher wages.
Ostry recognizes the Ostric and Navish languages as official languages, and promotes a bilingual status in government, trade, and business. In the 2010 census, 15,061 (69.6%) speak Ostric as a first language, followed by 6,032 (27.9%) speaking Navish, and 537 (2.5%) speaking another language as their primary tongue.
Unique for the region, Ostric is a Leonic language brought by settlers and refugees during the 9th and 10th centuries, with heavy influence taken from Navish and other Lhedwinic languages and dialects over the centuries. Historically, Ostric was considered endangered as Navish gained prominence as the language of official business and government. This however has begun to change as Ostric was formally introduced into the education system and local government. Over 80% of the island's population state they are bilingual in some capacity.
The majority of Ostrins follow the Trúathi faith, with 17,344 (81.2%) people members of the church. The remaining population either claim to be irreligious (3,738 or 17.5%) or members of other faiths (278 or 1.3%), primarily the Alydian Church. Trúathism came to Ostry in the 12th century with Navish raiders and settlers, and has been the dominant religious institution on the island since. Trúathists in Ostry are organized under the Church of Ostry (Ostric: Kòscół Òstrsczi; Navish: Ostrøys kirke), under the jurisdiction of the Elder of Ostry.
Ostry's education system, as part of the Navish Ministry of Education, is heavily based on the Navish and other Lhedwinic models. Public education is free, and offered through ten primary schools, four secondary schools, and one university. The Ostric public system typically runs in blocks of two semesters from September to December and January to April. Education is compulsory for children within the primary (6-13) and lower secondary (13-16) education systems, and the rate of attendance to higher education has been steadily increasing.
The University of Ostry is the only institution of tertiary education on the island, with a student population of around 500. The university is connected with the University of Berke on mainland Navack. Despite heavy investment into the institution by both the public and regional government, the university has failed to mitigate the large amount of Ostrins who leave the island to pursue higher education on the mainland or elsewhere in Lhedwin, contributing to a noticeable brain drain among islanders with bachelor degrees or higher.
There is one major roadway encircling Ostry, the Ostric Roadway, often nicknamed the Amber Route (Ostric: Darga Jantôrowé; Navish: Ravrute). The roadway, built in 1982, connects all the major municipalities, and allows the entire island to be traversed in around four hours. There are plans to provide a public transit bus around the island, but this has yet to be implemented. From 1870 to 1957, a narrow single-gauge railway ran from Jakóbgard to Nordawies, before ending service due to low demand.
There is one public airport on the island, Jakóbgard Airport, which offers daily service to Velbri and biweekly flights to the Navish mainland via Heide. There also exists a consistent ferry service from Jakóbgard to Sommeren to the west and Slukefter, Glanodel in the east. Entry into Ostry, either by sea or air, is controlled by the Navish Border Guard. By law, all ships entering from international waters must dock at the port in Jakóbgard before unloading.
Ostry has a rich musical tradition, particularly in regards to sea shanties, which remain popular and a source of national pride. The first collection of Ostric sea shanties emerged in 1818 with Peter Rolvsson's Sanger og ballader fra øya Ostrøy. Pop music, rock and roll, and punk are also popular on the island. Due to Ostry's historical role as a military port, military marches and hymns have left their mark on the island's musical traditions, greatly influencing Ostry's unofficial anthem.
Association football is the largest sport in Ostry, with Jakóbgard FC being the premier football club on the island. Since 2018, one Ostrin, Nikódem Nesz, has played for the Navack national football team as centre forward. Outside of football, ice hockey and basketball are also popular, with Ostry being notable within Navack for a number of significant hockey players, such as Ulf Abrahamsen and Ignacy Jedënak.
Ostric cuisine is heavily influenced by its climate, with cod being a staple in most dishes. Due to this, most Ostric dishes use seafood in their recipes, along with such other ingredients such as wheat, potatoes, and vegetables. The most internationally recognized Ostric dish is commonly zupa dôrszô, a broth made with cod and various other ingredients. Fish and chips (rëba z fritkômi) are also popular on the island, with a multitude of chip shops in most communities. Outside of seafood, lamb is also consumed widely, although not as much as fish. Popular desserts include poppy seed bread (chléb z môkiém) and cziesznia, a cake with a cherry base. Ostrins are well-known for their high consumption of alcohol, primarily beer and rum. A strong local liquor, kòrnus, has gained some popularity in international markets, particularly in Navack. The largest brewer on Ostry, Renifer, has become a symbol of Ostric culture abroad.
Public holidays and festivals
|1 January||New Year's Day||Celebration of the new year.|
|Variable, during the March equinox||Dësablota||Festival commemorating the end of winter and the beginning of spring.|
|1 May||Labour Day||Celebration of workers and labourers.|
|Variable, during the summer solstice||Midsummer||Festival designating the longest period of daylight during the year.|
|Variable, during the September equinox||Harvest Day||Festival commemorating the end of summer and the beginning of autumn.|
|20 November||National Territory Day||Commemoration of the Gardrag Agreement and the creation of the National Territory of Ostry.|
|18 December||Day of the Republic||Commemoration of the declaration of independence in 1919 during the Navish Revolution.|
|Variable, during the winter solstice||Yule||Festival designating the longest period of night during the year.|
|31 December||New Year's Eve||Celebration of the end of the current year.|