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In international law three categories of Political status are usually recognized:
- Independent countries e.g.: France, Canada
- Internal independent countries which are under the protection of another country in matters of defense and foreign affairs, e.g.: Netherlands Antilles, the Faroe Islands, British Virgin Islands etc.
- Colonies and other dependent political units e.g. Puerto Rico.
There are, furthermore, several unrecognized countries and independence, secessionist, autonomy and nationalist movements throughout the world. See list of unrecognized countries.
Political status in Northern Ireland
Political Status was an alternative name for Special Category Status.