Secession (derived from the Latin term secessio) is the act of withdrawing from an organization, union, or especially a political entity. Threats of secession can also be a strategy for achieving more limited goals.
Mainstream political philosophy largely ignored theories of secession until the dissolution of the Soviet Union, Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia in the early 1990s through secession. Theories of secession relate to a fundamental question of political philosophy: the basis of the state's authority.
In his 1991 book Secession: The Morality of Political Divorce From Fort Sumter to Lithuania and Quebec, philosophy professor Allen Buchanan outlined limited rights to secession under certain circumstances, mostly related to oppression by people of other ethnic or racial groups, and especially those previously conquered by other peoples.
In the fall of 1994 the Journal of Libertarian Studies published Robert W. McGee's article "Secession Reconsidered". He writes from a libertarian perspective, but holds that secession is justified only if secessionists can create a viable, if minimal, state on contiguous territory.
In April 1995 the Ludwig Von Mises Institute sponsored a secession conference. Papers from the conference were later published in the book Secession, State and Liberty by David Gordon. Among articles included were: "The Secession Tradition in America" by Donald Livingston; "The Ethics of Secession" by Scott Boykin; “Nations by Consent: Decomposing the Nation-State” by Murray Rothbard; "Yankee Confederates: New England Secession Movements Prior to the War Between the States" by Thomas DiLorenzo; "Was the Union Army's Invasion of the Confederate States a Lawful Act?" by James Ostrowski.
In July 1998 the Rutgers University journal "Society" published papers from a "Symposium on Secession and Nationalism at the Millennium" including the articles "The Western State as Paradigm" by Hans-Herman Hoppe, "Profit Motives in Secession" by Sabrina P. Ramet, "Rights of Secession" by Daniel Kofman, "The Very Idea of Secession" by Donald Livingston and "Secession, Autonomy, & Modernity" by Edward A. Tiryakian. In 2007 the University of South Carolina sponsored a conference called "Secession As an International Phenomenon" which produced a number of papers on the topic.
Justifications for secession
Some theories of secession emphasize a general right of secession for any reason ("Choice Theory") while others emphasize that secession should be considered only to rectify grave injustices ("Just Cause Theory"). Some theories do both. A list of justifications may be presented supporting the right to secede, as described by Allen Buchanan, Robert McGee, Anthony Birch, Walter Williams, Jane Jacobs, Frances Kendall and Leon Louw, Leopold Kohr, Kirkpatrick Sale, and various authors in David Gordon's "Secession, State and Liberty", includes:
- United States President James Buchanan, Fourth Annual Message to Congress on the State of the Union December 3, 1860: "The fact is that our Union rests upon public opinion, and can never be cemented by the blood of its citizens shed in civil war. If it can not live in the affections of the people, it must one day perish. Congress possesses many means of preserving it by conciliation, but the sword was not placed in their hand to preserve it by force."
- Former President of the United States Thomas Jefferson, in a letter to William H. Crawford, Secretary of War under President James Madison, on June 20, 1816: "In your letter to Fisk, you have fairly stated the alternatives between which we are to choose : 1, licentious commerce and gambling speculations for a few, with eternal war for the many ; or, 2, restricted commerce, peace, and steady occupations for all. If any State in the Union will declare that it prefers separation with the first alternative, to a continuance in union without it, I have no hesitation in saying, 'let us separate'. I would rather the States should withdraw, which are for unlimited commerce and war, and confederate with those alone which are for peace and agriculture."
- Economic enfranchisement of an economically oppressed class that is regionally concentrated within the scope of a larger national territory.
- The right to liberty, freedom of association and private property
- Consent as important democratic principle; will of majority to secede should be recognized
- Making it easier for states to join with others in an experimental union
- Dissolving such union when goals for which it was constituted are not achieved
- Self-defense when larger group presents lethal threat to minority or the government cannot adequately defend an area
- Self-determination of peoples
- Preserving culture, language, etc. from assimilation or destruction by a larger or more powerful group
- Furthering diversity by allowing diverse cultures to keep their identity
- Rectifying past injustices, especially past conquest by a larger power
- Escaping "discriminatory redistribution", i.e., tax schemes, regulatory policies, economic programs, etc. that distribute resources away to another area, especially in an undemocratic fashion
- Enhanced efficiency when the state or empire becomes too large to administer efficiently
- Preserving "liberal purity" (or "conservative purity") by allowing less (or more) liberal regions to secede
- Providing superior constitutional systems which allow flexibility of secession
- Keeping political entities small and human scale through right to secession
Aleksandar Pavkovic, associate professor at the Department of Politics and International Studies at Macquarie University in Australia and the author of several books on secession describes five justifications for a general right of secession within liberal political theory:
- Anarcho-Capitalism: individual liberty to form political associations and private property rights together justify right to secede and to create a "viable political order" with like-minded individuals.
- Democratic Secessionism: the right of secession, as a variant of the right of self-determination, is vested in a "territorial community" which wishes to secede from "their existing political community"; the group wishing to secede then proceeds to delimit "its" territory by the majority.
- Communitarian Secessionism: any group with a particular "participation-enhancing" identity, concentrated in a particular territory, which desires to improve its members' political participation has a prima facie right to secede.
- Cultural Secessionism: any group which was previously in a minority has a right to protect and develop its own culture and distinct national identity through seceding into an independent state.
- The Secessionism of Threatened Cultures: if a minority culture is threatened within a state that has a majority culture, the minority needs a right to form a state of its own which would protect its culture.
Types of secession
- Secession from federation or confederation (political entities with substantial reserved powers which have agreed to join together) versus secession from a unitary state (a state governed as a single unit with few powers reserved to sub-units)
- Colonial aka "wars of independence" from a "mother country" or imperial state
- National (seceding entirely from the national state) versus local (seceding from one entity of the national state into another entity of the same state)
- Central or enclave (seceding entity is completely surrounded by the original state) versus peripheral (along a border of the original state)
- Secession by contiguous units versus secession by non-contiguous units (exclaves)
- Separation or partition (although an entity secedes, the rest of the state retains its structure) versus dissolution (all political entities dissolve their ties and create several new states)
- Irredentism where secession is sought in order to annex the territory to another state because of common ethnicity or prior historical links
- Minority (a minority of the population or territory secedes) versus majority (a majority of the population or territory secedes)
- Secession of better off regions versus secession of worse off regions
- The threat of Secession sometimes is used as a strategy to gain greater autonomy within the original state
Arguments against secession
Allen Buchanan, who supports secession under limited circumstances, lists arguments that might be used against secession:
- "Protecting Legitimate Expectations" of those who now occupy territory claimed by secessionists, even in cases where that land was stolen
- "Self Defense" if losing part of the state would make it difficult to defend the rest of it
- "Protecting Majority Rule" and the principle that minorities must abide by them
- "Minimization of Strategic Bargaining" by making it difficult to secede, such as by imposing an exit tax
- "Soft Paternalism" because secession will be bad for secessionists or others
- "Threat of Anarchy" because smaller and smaller entities may choose to secede until there is chaos, although this is not the true meaning of the political and philosophical concept.
- "Preventing Wrongful Taking" such as the state's previous investment in infrastructure
- "Distributive Justice" arguments that wealthier areas cannot secede from poorer ones
Movements that work towards political secession may describe themselves as being autonomy, separatist, independence, self-determination, partition, devolution decentralization, sovereignty, self-governance or decolonization movements instead of, or in addition to, being secession movements.
During the 19th century, the single British colony in eastern mainland Australia, New South Wales (NSW) was progressively divided up by the British government as new settlements were formed and spread. Victoria (Vic) in 1851 and Queensland (Qld) in 1859.
However, settlers agitated to divide the colonies throughout the later part of the century; particularly in central Queensland (centred in Rockhampton) in the 1860s and 1890s, and in North Queensland (with Bowen as a potential colonial capital) in the 1870s. Other secession (or territorial separation) movements arose and these advocated the secession of New England in northern central New South Wales, Deniliquin in the Riverina district also in NSW, and Mount Gambier in the eastern part of South Australia.
- Western Australia
Secession movements have surfaced several times in Western Australia (WA), where a 1933 referendum for secession from the Federation of Australia passed with a two-thirds majority. The referendum had to be ratified by the British Parliament, which declined to act, on the grounds that it would contravene the Australian Constitution.
- The Principality of Hutt River claims to have seceded from Australia in 1970, although its status is not recognised by Australia or any other country. According to a lexicon on nationalist movements across the world, Macau happened to recognise that Principality.
Austria successfully seceded from Nazi Germany on April 27, 1945. This took place after seven years of Austria being part of Adolf Hitler's Third Reich due to the Anschluss annexation of Austria into Nazi Germany in March 1938.
Belgium and the Netherlands
On August 25, 1830, during the reign of William I, the nationalistic opera La muette de Portici was performed in Brussels. Soon after, the Belgian Revolt occurred, which resulted in the Belgian secession from the Netherlands.
Two southern republican states seceded from Brazil in 1835. Defeated in the War of the Farrapos, they returned in 1845. The slightly earlier cabanagem struggle of Grão-Pará was in part a northern secessionist movement.
Throughout Canada's history, there has been tension between English-speaking and French-speaking Canadians. Under the Constitutional Act of 1791, the Quebec colony (including parts of what is today Quebec, Ontario and Newfoundland and Labrador) was divided in two: Lower Canada (which retained French law and institutions and is now divided between the provinces of Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador) and Upper Canada (a new colony intended to accommodate the many English-speaking settlers, including the United Empire Loyalists, and now part of Ontario). The intent was to provide each group with its own colony. In 1841, the two Canadas were merged into the Province of Canada. The union proved contentious, however, resulting in a legislative deadlock between English and French legislators. The difficulties of the union led to the adoption of a federal system in Canada, and the Canadian Confederation in 1867. The federal framework did not eliminate all tensions, however, leading to the Quebec sovereignty movement in the latter half of the 20th century.
Other occasional secessionist movements have included anti-Confederation movements in 19th century Atlantic Canada (see Anti-Confederation Party), the North-West Rebellion of 1885, and various small separatism movements in Alberta particularly (see Alberta separatism) and Western Canada generally (see, for example, Western Canada Concept).
After the 1823 collapse of the First Mexican Empire, the former Captaincy-General of Guatemala was organized into a new Federal Republic of Central America. In 1838 Nicaragua seceded. The Federal Republic was formally dissolved in 1840, all but one of the states having seceded amidst general disorder.
- The Republic of China (ROC) government, which ruled mainland China from 1911 to 1949, administers Taiwan and a few surrounding islands, while the People's Republic of China (PRC) government administers mainland China. Both sides officially claim sovereignty over both mainland China and Taiwan. There is debate in Taiwan as to whether to create a new Republic of Taiwan to replace the current ROC government. At the Third session of the Tenth National People's Congress (March 14, 2005) the PRC government adopted the Anti-Secession Law of the People's Republic of China. See Taiwan independence.
- Within the PRC, the three northwestern regions of Xinjiang, Inner Mongolia, and Tibet, (and its accompanying regions) are also the focus of secessionist calls by the Tibetan Independence Movement and East Turkestan Islamic Movement.
In 1974, the Turkish Army invaded northern Cyprus to protect the interests of the ethnic Turkish minority, who in the following year formed the Turkish Federative State of Cyprus and in 1983 declared independence as the Republic of Northern Cyprus, recognized only by Turkey.
The Democratic Republic of Timor-Leste (also known as East Timor) has been described as having "seceded" from Indonesia. After Portuguese sovereignty was terminated in 1975, East Timor was occupied by Indonesia. However the United Nations and the International Court of Justice refused to recognize this incorporation. Therefore the resulting civil war and eventual 2002 East Timorese vote for complete separation are better described as an independence movement.
Following the 1993 victory of opposition forces against the communist Derg regime during the Ethiopian Civil War, Eritrea (formerly known as "Bahri Negash" before being renamed to "Eritrea" by Italian colonizers from 1890–1941) seceded in a United Nations referendum with the blessing of the newly formed Ethiopian government.
Before the Treaty of Lisbon entered into force on 1 December 2009 no provision in the treaties or law of the European Union outlined the ability of a state to voluntarily withdraw from the EU. The European Constitution did propose such a provision and, after the failure to ratify the Treaty establishing a Constitution for Europe, that provision was then included in the Lisbon Treaty.
The treaty introduces an exit clause for members who wish to withdraw from the Union. This formalises the procedure by stating that a member state may notify the European Council that it wishes to withdraw, upon which withdrawal negotiations begin; if no other agreement is reached the treaty ceases to apply to the withdrawing state two years after such notification.
After a decade of tumultuous federalism, Ecuador and Venezuela seceded from Gran Colombia in 1830, leaving the similarly tumultuous United States of Colombia, now the Republic of Colombia which also lost Panama in 1903.
Pakistan seceded from India in what is known as the Partition. Today, the Constitution of India does not allow Indian states to secede from the Union. The state of Jammu and Kashmir has had a violent secessionist movement in the Valley of Kashmir since 1989, which continues. Other violent secessionist movements in Nagaland, Assam, Manipur, Punjab (known as the Khalistan movement), Mizoram and Tripura were also formerly active, while Tamil Nadu had a non-violent movement in the 1960s.
While a violent Maoist insurgency continues to rage across a wide-swath of eastern rural India, the movement is not considered a secessionist movement because the goal of the Maoists is to overthrow the government of India, although rebel commanders have occasionally called for a Communist republic to be carved out of swaths of India.
The Movement for the Independence of Sicily (Movimento Indipendentista Siciliano, MIS) has its roots in the Sicilian Independentist Movement of the late 1940s. They have been around for 60 years and is the oldest movement in Italy. Lega Nord seeks the independence of Padania which includes lands along the Po Valley in northern Italy. Some organizations separately work for the independence of Venetia or Veneto and the session or reunification of South Tyrol with Austria.
Active secession movements include: Iranian Azeri, Assyrian independence movement, Iranian Kurdistan; Kurdistan Democratic Party of Iran (KDPI), Khūzestān Province (Arab nationalist); Al-Ahwaz Arab People's Democratic Popular Front, Democratic Solidarity Party of Al-Ahwaz (See Politics of Khūzestān Province: Arab politics and separatism), and Balochistan People's Party (BPP) supporting Baloch Separatism.
- Texas seceded from Mexico in 1836 (see Texas Revolution), after animosity between the Mexican government and the American settlers of the Coahuila y Tejas State. It was later annexed by the United States in 1845.
- The Republic of the Rio Grande seceded from Mexico on January 17, 1840, it rejoined Mexico on November 6 the same year.
- After the federal system was abandoned by President Santa Anna, the Congress of Yucatán approved in 1840 a declaration of independence, establishing the Republic of Yucatán. The Republic rejoined Mexico in 1843.
Secession movements have surfaced several times in the South Island of New Zealand. A Premier of New Zealand, Sir Julius Vogel, was amongst the first people to make this call, which was voted on by the Parliament of New Zealand as early as 1865. The desire for South Island independence was one of the main factors in moving the capital of New Zealand from Auckland to Wellington in the same year.
The NZ South Island Party with a pro-South agenda, fielded only five candidates (4.2% of electoral seats) candidates in the 1999 General Election but only achieved 0.14% (2622 votes) of the general vote. The reality today is that although "South Islanders" are most proud of their geographic region, secession does not carry any real constituency; the party was not able to field any candidates in the 2008 election due to being unable to enlist 500 paying members, a requirement by the New Zealand Electoral commission. The party is treated more as a "joke" party than any real political force.
Between 1967 and 1970, the unrecognised state of Biafra (The Republic of Biafra) seceded from Nigeria, resulting in a civil war that ended with the state returning to Nigeria. Later in 1999 at the beginning of a new democratic regime, other secessionist movements emerged, the movement for the Actualization of a Sovereign state of Biafra was formed as a military wing of the Republic of Biafra.
Norway and Sweden
Sweden, having left the Kalmar Union with Denmark and Norway in the 16th century, entered into a loose personal union with Norway in 1814. Following a constitutional crisis, on June 7, 1905 the Norwegian Parliament declared that King Oscar II had failed to fulfill his constitutional duties. He was therefore no longer King of Norway and because the union depended on the two countries sharing a king, it was thus dissolved. After negotiations Sweden agreed to this on October 26.and on April 14
After the Awami League won the 1970 national elections, negotiations to form a new government floundered, resulting in the Bangladesh Liberation War by which the eastern wing of Pakistan seceded, to become Bangladesh. The Balochistan Liberation Army (also Baloch Liberation Army or Boluchistan Liberation army) (BLA) is a Baloch nationalist militant secessionist organization. The stated goals of the organization include the establishment of an independent state of Balochistan free of Pakistani and Iranian Federations. The name Baloch Liberation Army first became public in summer 2000, after the organization claimed credit for a series of bomb attacks in markets and removal of railways lines.
Papua New Guinea
Somaliland is an autonomous region, which is part of the Federal Republic of Somalia. Those who call the area the Republic of Somaliland consider it to be the successor state of the former British Somaliland protectorate. Having established its own local government in Somalia in 1991, the region's self-declared independence remains unrecognized by any country or international organization.
In 1910, following the British Empire's defeat of the Afrikaner in the Boer Wars, four self-governing colonies in the south of Africa were merged into the Union of South Africa. The four regions were the Cape Colony, Orange Free State, Natal and Transvaal. Two other regions later became the nations of Lesotho and Swaziland in the 1920s. Following the election of the Nationalist government in 1948, some English-speaking whites in Natal advocated either secession or a loose federation. In 1993, leading into South Africa's first elections of universal suffrage and the end of Apartheid, the Natal and Cape regions called for their secession from South Africa. Pressure from the National Party government and the ANC (African National Congress) managed to suppress the two movements.
In 2008, a political movement calling for the return to independence of the Cape resurged in the shape of the political organisation, the Cape Party. The Cape Party contested their first elections on 22 April 2009.
Spain (known officially as "the Kingdom of Spain") was assembled in the 15th and 16th centuries from various component kingdoms, of which Portugal seceded in the Portuguese Restoration War while other component kingdoms lost their secession wars. Spain has several secessionist movements, the most notable being in Catalonia and in the Basque Country.
The Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam, which has been banned in US, UK, EU, Canada, and many other countries as a terrorist group, operated a de facto independent state called Tamil Eelam in eastern and northern Sri Lanka until 2009.
In 1847, seven disaffected Catholic cantons formed a separate alliance because of moves to change the cantons of Switzerland from a confederation to a more centralized government federation. This effort was crushed in the Sonderbund war and a new Swiss Federal Constitution was created.
Ireland is the only territory that has withdrawn from the United Kingdom proper. Ireland declared independence in 1916 and, as the Irish Free State, gained independence in 1922. Currently the United Kingdom has a number of secession movements:
- In Northern Ireland, Irish Republicans and Nationalists in general, have long called for the secession of Northern Ireland from the United Kingdom in order to join the Republic of Ireland. This is opposed by Unionists.
- In Scotland the Scottish National Party (SNP) campaigns for Scottish independence and direct Scottish membership of the European Union. It has representation at all levels of Scottish politics and now forms the devolved Scottish Government. A number of nascent pro-independence parties have enjoyed only limited electoral success. The Scottish Green Party, the Scottish Socialist Party and the Scottish Enterprise Party are most widely publicised, however all independence movements/parties are opposed by Unionists. A referendum on the independence has been scheduled for 2014, after being agreed by Alex Salmond and David Cameron
- In Wales, Plaid Cymru (Party of Wales) stands for Welsh independence within the European Union. It is also represented at all levels of Welsh politics and is the third largest party in the National Assembly of Wales.
- In Cornwall, supporters of Mebyon Kernow call for the creation of a Cornish Assembly and separation from England, giving the county significant self-government, whilst remaining within the United Kingdom as a fifth home nation.
- In England the now-disbanded Free England Party (FEP) campaigned for English independence.
- Parts of Southern England like Devon, the Isle of Wight, Minster in Kent, and Wessex, have autonomy movements.
- Some of the more radical members of the British direct democracy movement in the Conservative Party (Daniel Hannan for example) – while not actually advocating secession – support the federalization of the UK into states along county boundaries (actually a proposal of 5 or 6 regions of England, 4 or 5 in Scotland and 3 in Wales). There are currently 9 government office regions in England and none in the other Home Nations.
Discussions and threats of secession often surface in American politics, and secession was declared during the Civil War between the States. However in 1869 the United States Supreme Court ruled in Texas v. White, 74 U.S. 700 (1869) that unilateral secession was not permitted saying that the union between a state (Texas in the case before the bar) "was as complete, as perpetual, and as indissoluble as the union between the original States. There was no place for reconsideration or revocation, except through revolution or through consent of the States."
On June 25, 1991, Croatia and Slovenia seceded from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Also Bosnia and Hercegovina and Macedonia declared independence. Followed, the federation collapsed, Serbia and Montenegro, was renamed to Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Several wars ensued between FR Yugoslavia and seceding entitites and among other ethnic groups in Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and later, Kosovo. Montenegro peacefully separated from its union with Serbia in 2006.
- List of historical autonomist and secessionist movements
- List of active autonomist and secessionist movements
- List of unrecognized countries
- List of U.S. state secession proposals
- List of U.S. county secession proposals
- City state
- Economic secession
- Nullification (U.S. Constitution)
- Schism (religion)
- Urban secession
- Belgian Revolution
- Cape Party
- Christian Exodus
- Conch Republic
- Declaration of Independence
- Essex Junto
- European Free Alliance
- Free State Project
- The Great Republic of Rough and Ready
- Hartford Convention
- League of the South
- Middlebury Institute
- New York City secession
- Orania, Northern Cape
- Republic of Kinney
- Republic of South Carolina
- Scottish Secession Church
- Secession of Quebec
- Second Vermont Republic
- South Carolina Exposition and Protest
- Texas Secession Movement
- Black Liberation Army
- Unrepresented Nations and Peoples Organization
- Allen Buchanan, “Secession”, Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, 2007.
- Scott Boykin, "The Ethics of Secession", in David Gordon, Secession, State and Liberty, Transactions Publishers, 1998.
- Allen Buchanan, Secession: The Morality of Political Divorce From Fort Sumter to Lithuania and Quebec, West View Press, 1991.
- Robert W. McGee, Secession Reconsidered, the Journal of Libertarian Studies, Fall 1994.
- David Gordon, Secession, State and Liberty, Transactions Publishers, 1998.
- "Secession As an International Phenomenon", Abstracts of Papers, 2007 Association for Research on Ethnicity and Nationalism in the Americas” conference sponsored by the University of South Carolina Richard Walker Institute for International Studies.
- Allen Buchanan, How can We Construct a Political Theory of Secession?, paper presented October 5, 2006 to the International Studies Association.
- Anthony H. Birch, "Another Liberal Theory of Secession". Political Studies 32, 1984, 596-602.
- Walter Williams, Parting company is an option, WorldNetDaily.Com, December 24, 2003.
- Jane Jacobs, Cities and the Wealth of Nations, Vintage, 1985.
- Frances Kendall and Leon Louw, After Apartheid: The Solution for South Africa, Institute for Contemporary Studies, 1987. One of several popular books they wrote about canton-based constitutional alternatives that include an explicit right to secession.
- Leopold Kohr, The Breakdown of Nations, Routledge & K. Paul, 1957
- Human Scale, Coward, McCann & Geoghegan, 1980.
- University of Technology, Sydney description of Aleksandar Pavkovic
- Aleksandar Pavkovic, Secession, Majority Rule and Equal Rights: a Few Questions, Macquarie University Law Journal, 2003.
- Steven Yates, “When Is Political Divorce Justified” in David Gordon, 1998.
- Allen Buchanan, Secession: The Morality of Political Divorce From Fort Sumter to Lithuania and Quebec, Chapter 3, pp. 87-123.
- Santosh C. Saha, Perspectives on contemporary ethnic conflict, p. 63, Lexington Books, 2006 ISBN 0-7391-1085-3.
- Paul D. Elliot, The East Timor Dispute, The International and Comparative Law Quarterly, Vol. 27, No. 1 (Jan., 1978).
- James J. Fox, Dionisio Babo Soares, Out of the ashes: destruction and reconstruction of East Timor, p. 175, ANU E Press, 2003, ISBN 0-9751229-1-6
- Thomas D. Musgrave, Self-determination and national minorities, p. xiii, Oxford University Press, 2000 ISBN 0-19-829898-6
- Linz, Juan; Stepan, Alfred; Yadav, Yogendra (2007). "'Nation State' or 'State Nation': India in Comparative Perspective". Democracy and Diversity: India and the America Experience. Oxford University Press. pp. 81–82. ISBN 0-19-568368-4
- UNPO on West Balochistan
- No Winner Seen in Somalia's Battle With Chaos New York Times, June 2, 2009
- The Transitional Federal Charter of the Somali Republic: "The Somali Republic shall have the following boundaries. (a) North; Gulf of Aden. (b) North West; Djibouti. (c) West; Ethiopia. (d) South south-west; Kenya. (e) East; Indian Ocean."
- CIA - The World Factbook - Somalia
- The Signs Say Somaliland, but the World Says Somalia
- UN in Action: Reforming Somaliland's Judiciary
- SOUTH AFRICA: Cry of Secession TIME, Monday, May 11, 1953
- Cape Party Website , Monday, May 11, 1953
- A Brief Survey of Swiss History, Switzerland Federal Department of Foreign Affairs.
- Texas v. White, 74 U.S. 700 (1868) at Cornell University Law School Supreme Court collection.
- Aleksandar Pavković, Peter Radan, Creating New States: Theory and Practice of Secession, p. 222, Ashgate Publishing, Ltd., 2007.
- Jason Sorens, Secessionism: Identity, Interest, and Strategy, McGill-Queen's University Press, 2012.
- Mario Pascalev, "Territory: An Account of the Territorial Authority of States." Dissertation, Bowling Green State University, VDM, 2009.
- Dmitry Orlov, Reinventing Collapse, New Society Books, 2008, ISBN 978-0-86571-606-3
- Allen Buchanan, Justice, Legitimacy, and Self-Determination: Moral Foundations for International Law (Oxford Political Theory), Oxford University Press, 2007.
- Marc Weller, Autonomy, Self Governance and Conflict Resolution (Kindle Edition), Taylor & Francis, 2007.
- Anne Noronha Dos Santos, Military Intervention and Secession in South Asia: The Cases of Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Kashmir, and Punjab (Psi Reports), Praeger Security International, 2007.
- Wayne Norman, Negotiating Nationalism: Nation-Building, Federalism, and Secession in the Multinational State, Oxford University Press, USA, 2006.
- Robert, F. Hawes, One Nation, Indivisible? A Study of Secession and the Constitution, Fultus Corporation, 2006.
- Secession And International Law: Conflict Avoidance-regional Appraisals, United Nations Publications, 2006.
- Marcelo G. Kohen (Editor), Secession: International Law Perspectives, Cambridge University Press, 2006.
- Miodrag Jovanovic, Constitutionalizing Secession in Federalized States: A Procedural Approach, Ashgate Publishing, 2006.
- Christopher Heath Wellman, A Theory of Secession, Cambridge University Press, 2005.
- Bruno Coppieters, Richard Sakwa (Editors), Contextualizing Secession: Normative Studies in Comparative Perspective, Oxford University Press, USA, 2003.
- Percy Lehning, Theories of Secession, Routledge, 1998.
- David Gordon, Secession, State and Liberty, Transactions Publishers, 1998.
- Metta Spencer, Separatism: Democracy and Disintegration, Rowan & Littlefield, 1998.
- Hurst Hannum, Autonomy, Sovereignty, and Self-Determination: The Accommodation of Conflicting Rights, University of Pennsylvania Press, 1996.
- Allen Buchanan, Secession: The Morality Of Political Divorce From Fort Sumter To Lithuania And Quebec, Westview Press, 1991.
- Leopold Kohr, The Breakdown of Nations, Routledge & K. Paul, 1957.
|Look up secession in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
- Christopher Ketcham, Most Likely to Secede, Good Magazine, January 2008.
- Michael Hirsch, How the South Won (This) Civil War, Newsweek, April 2008, article speculating on northern secession.
- Secession (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)
- Secession - from the 1911 Encyclopædia Britannica
- Secession - from the Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia
- "Secession As an International Phenomenon". Abstracts of Papers, 2007 Association for Research on Ethnicity and Nationalism in the Americas” conference sponsored by the University of South Carolina Richard Walker Institute for International Studies.
- Andrei Kreptul, The Constitutional Right of Secession in Political Theory and History, Journal of Libertarian Studies, Ludwig von Mises Institute, Volume 17, no. 4 (Fall 2003), pp. 39–100.
- Assistant professor Jason Sorens' writings on secession, Department of Political Science, University at Buffalo
- Chisholm, Hugh, ed. (1911). "secession". Encyclopædia Britannica (11th ed.). Cambridge University Press.