Nuntius Inimici - Inimician Broadcasting Corporation
IMPERIAL - CONFEDERAL FRIENDSHIP TREATY SIGNED
EMPEROR APPOINTS DISGRACED FORMER DEFENCE OFFICER MANCOV AS DRONE CHIEF
Former Disgraced Imperial Defence Officer Mancov's New Official Portrait
Telum, 22nd January 2022 -- With the affixing of signatures by Confederal President of North Diessen Ekrem Mueller and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos, a new Treaty of Peace and Amity between the Empire and its northern neighbour came into force this afternoon. The Treaty, dubbed Ekrem's Convention after the North Diessenian President, who took the initiative for its contents, makes provision for an intense bond of friendship and co-operation between the Imperial and Confederal governments, including on defence, intelligence-sharing, and joint policing of territorial waters.
"This Treaty binds two nations together like never before seen in either of our histories", President Mueller commented after the signing ceremony in the Imperial Palace today, "In recent years, the Empire of Inimicus and the Confederacy of North Diessen have found one another on the same side in international politics, in economic interests, and in defending our common territorial integrity. This Treaty expands and intensifies this co-operation, and formalises our mutual duties and responsibilities."
Emperor Artabanos emphasised the "mutual defence" aspects of the Convention, which appear to reiterate the principles of the Treaty of Telum, signatories of which are obliged to defend one another in case of attack by outside actors. The Inimicus-Diessen convention also makes provision for military bases in one another's territory, and patrolling of each other's waters by joint naval units. Given the massive scale of the Imperial Armed Forces in comparison to their Diessenian Defence Force counterparts, these clauses of the Treaty are likely to benefit North Diessen disproportionately.
Nevertheless, the Empire appears to have much to gain from this Treaty. "We have further agreed provisions for economic and strategic access to the Artabanos Canal, when completion is within reach", President Mueller announced, "Although any access, at any point, by any outside actor, will be fully at the discretion of the North Diessen Confederal Government."
The full text of the Treaty of Peace and Amity is as yet undisclosed, however Imperial Palace sources suggest a copy of the full document is to be presented to the public sometime this week.
In other news, His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos appointed disgraced former Imperial Defence Offier Boris Mancov to the newly-created post of Commissioner for Drone Warfare this morning. The Emperor announced this new post would "aid the Empire's ambitions to become the leading unmanned aerial vehicle power in the region", following large-scale investments in UAV technology by new Imperial Defence Officer James Cocx.
Boris Mancov was dismissed as presiding force of the Defence Office last year, after sending several Imperial Navy fleets into the Strait of Adventuranza before withdrawing all Inimician forces in the face of a Reitzmic presence in the area. His talents, however, were appreciated across the political spectrum, and his specific interest in drone warfare appears to have prompted today's appointment. "Today, His Imperial Majesty graced me with renewed appointment to public office", Mancov stated today, "Appointment to a post which I will aim to fulfill with utmost diligence and rigor."
The new Commissioner for Drone Warfare immediately announced the rollout of over a hundred Piaggio P.2HH attack drones and the deployment of a ƒ750m investment fund, conceded by Imperial Defence Officer James Cocx in November, to effectuate retraining of a branch of the Imperial Special Forces Command (ISFC). "This new ISFC UAV batallion will be the driving force behind this warfare revolution", Mancov stated, "A revolution which has a single purpose: to conserve Inimician lives. And I am beyond honoured to play my part in realising this revolution."
Plurality of Inimicians Now in Favour of Housing Anastasians Inside Imperial Border
The Valley of the Artabanoi on the border between Inimicus and North Diessen, the most popular location for a hypothesised refugee city
Anastasia City / Telum, 26th Jan 2022 -- The notion of finding the refugees of Anastasia City a new home inside the Empire of Inimicus is now the most popular opinion among Imperial Citizens. Nuntius Inimici polling yesterday revealed 29% of those questioned see a new city under the protection of the Imperial Armed Forces as the most viable solution to the Anastasian problem (23% were opposed, 48% don't know/don't care).
This week's terror attacks on Anastasia City dominated headlines in the region, and exposed "serious flaws", as an anonymous Imperial Palace source claimed, "in the ability of the Duchies government to keep order there." In line with this concern, the most frequent reason cited by those polled for why they supported establishing a new city inside Inimicus concerned safety and law enforcement. "There's just no way something like this could've happened if the Imperial Guard kept order there", one respondent commented. 79% of those polled agree that Inimician authorities could provide Anastasians with higher levels of safety than they currently enjoy.
As for potential locations for a new settlement of Anastasians in the Empire, the most popular option (at 59% support) appears to be the border valley in the northwest of Inimicus, This valley, which is the ancestral home of His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos, and is therefore known as the Valley of the Artabanoi, has been the proposed development site of a 'new city' to alleviate demographic pressure for several years. "It's a border region", says one of those polled, "And so could be seen as more international."
The Imperial Government claims it has "no plans whatsoever" to convince Anastasian immigration to sites in Inimicus. "That decision, and it is a major decision, is solely in the hands of the United Duchies government." Anastasians are currently prohibited from seeking asylum in the Empire, something which Imperial Consul Simge Galanth, in charge of the Empire's immigration policy, will aim to change within the coming days. Consul Galanth claimed "The time is right for the Empire to be hospitable to those in need, and especially those who have demonstrated they pay a good amount of tax."
Should Anastasians be granted the liberty of applying for asylum seeker status in the Empire, nothing would stop them coming over of their own accord.
PALACE OPENS DIPLOMACY TO NEW INTERNATIONAL PARTNERS
The Imperial Palace in Telum and His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos
Telum, 11th February 2022 -- The Empire of Inimicus will aim to re-establish diplomatic relations with the Republic of Istkalen, the Democratic Republic of Czech Slavia, and other hitherto controversial nations. His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos declared His nation's willingness to "enter into dialogue with any state, in any geographical position, as long as their interests broadly align with ours." In an apparent break from Imperial policy up until now, the Emperor confirmed the re-establishment of an Imperial embassy in Istkalen, despite the latter still appearing on the Imperial Foreign Office's red travel ban list. "The new administration in Istkalen has shown it means to participate in the international democratic world order", His Imperial Majesty declared today, "And Inimicus, being a co-operative, reasonable nation, will not deny them the opportunity to do so." Embassy staff are reportedly set to depart for Istkalen at any point.
The Emperor further mentioned Czech Slavia, a socialist state to which the Empire has reacted coldly thus far, as a potential new partner in Europe. "I note President for Life Reiseróva and I share many of the same goals, if not the same politics", Artabanos stated, possibly in reference to Reiseróva's recent indefinite term extension, making her the only other European head of government besides Artabanos Himself with a lifelong term of office. "I can confirm diplomatic contact has already been established with the Democratic Republic of Czech Slavia at low levels", the Emperor continued, "And we are currently looking into how we can officially recommence contact."
His Imperial Majesty's announcement was met with mixed reaction in the National Imperial Council, which scrutinises Imperial policy. Centre-Conservative Union members Henman Vern (Terra Centurio) and Ralph Jaevons (Terra Rosarum) said they oppose "any rapprochement with communists, terrorists, and murderers", referring to recent bloodshed in Istkalen. A majority of Imperial Councillors nevertheless appears in favour of opening up Inimician diplomacy. Jeff Speller (Terra Legati), usually a noted critic of His Imperial Majesty, supported His latest move, calling the Emperor's statement "a rare moment of Him working in the best interests of our country."
Although not mentioned by the Emperor specifically, the United Duchies seems another possible candidate for rapprochement. Inimico-Duchian relations soured after the High Duke's administration sought closer ties with Reitzmag, prompting the dissolution of the original Treaty of Telum, effectively barring the United Duchies from southern Europe's largest military partnership. Rumours in the Palace corridors suggest special envoys may be sent to the Duchies to negotiate naval and trade issues, as well as diffuse tensions surrounding Inimician involvement in the construction of the Artabanos Canal, which is scheduled to start competing directly with the Duchian Baltic Canal in the summer.
North Diessen Contacts Provincial Rather than Imperial Authority for Extradition of Terror Suspect
Palace Reports Talks with Reitzmag, but "no progress" made
Drone Commissioner Mancov Announces Carrier Conversion
President of the Confederacy of North Diessen Ekrem Mueller
Astro, 24th February 2022 -- The Emperor's Commissioner for Terra Praestoris, Natia Vonberg, claims to have received a formal request from the Confederacy of North Diessen for extradition of a runaway suspect in the recent bomb scare that hit the largest Diessenar news agency, the Hilverbode. The formal request suggests military and intelligence integration between the Empire and the Confederacy is not as smooth as previously expected. "Clearly", comments Colin Husky, Nuntius Inimici Political Editor, "There is friction between Diessenar and Imperial authorities. Extradition requests are never sent to local authorities like the Terra Praestoris provincial administration. Ekrem Mueller may be attempting to bypass national-level politicians in Inimicus, who are generally not keen on extraditing suspects they do not see the importance of."
Vonberg's office is nevertheless thought to have relayed the request to Imperial authorities in Telum. Imperial Consul Simge Galanth, whose portfolio includes criminal justice and policing, suggested the Emperor took North Diessen communicating to a Provincial authority as an insult: "His Imperial Majesty was disappointed to hear He was not contacted about this crucial affair. While our friendship with the Confederacy of North Diessen goes far and wide, we do not accept an attempted subversion of our statutory order by an outside power." Asked whether Imperial authorities knew where the desired suspect was or whether they are in custody, Galanth said: "I cannot comment on any individual cases, but let it be known that Imperial law enforcement and military organisations are of the highest standards, and are made aware of any movement across the Empire's borders."
Relations between Inimicus and North Diessen improved last year after tensions in 2020, when the Imperial Transportation Safety Agency (ITSA) implied North Diessenar agents were responsible for the downing of Needletail One, nearly killing His Imperial Majesty the Emperor. A successful Inimician intervention in a short-lived rebellion by the Diessenar state of Reuland led to widespread co-operation and a deeply-rooted alliance between the two states, and joint investment into a second canal link between the Caspian and Persian Gulf.
Imperial Foreign Officer Sarah Gladwell confirmed talks with Reitzmag are ongoing
Telum, 24th February 2022 -- Inimician diplomats have held backroom discussions with representatives from the Kingdom of Reitzmag in an attempt to normalise relations between the two governments. Imperial Foreign Officer Sarah Gladwell nevertheless confirmed "talks have borne no fruit thus far", as Foreign Office sources suggest Reitzmag refuses to accept its building of military islands in the Caspian Sea last year was an act of wrongful aggression. Imperial Armed Forces representatives are also said to have refused to concede the Inimician deployment in the Adventuranza Strait was erroneous, citing "concerns for the security and safety of our ally, the Kingdom of Spain" as grounds for the widely criticised Navy actions in the contested Spanish strait.
Gladwell revealed Reitzmag has made demands surrounding Inimicus's stock of two hundred nuclear warheads, but confirmed "no foreign power will direct Inimicus's nuclear capacity". Reitzmic officials are thought to be concerned about rumours the Imperial Armed Forces are to establish a presence in the Republic of Istkalen, following last week's announcement by Emperor Artabanos that diplomatic relations with previously-sanctioned nations are to resume. "Given these demands", Gladwell commented, "It is extremely difficult to diffuse the tension between us, and to discuss, seriously, what can be done."
It is unclear whether talks with Reitzmag are to resume. Foreign Officer Gladwell suggested Inimicus would be willing to relax its current package of sanctions against Reitzmag if "assurances of non-aggression" were made by the government of Simon Bridges. "However", the Foreign Officer continued, "I am fast losing hope that this is within reach."
Portus Inimici, 24th February 2022 -- Imperial Drone Commissioner and former disgraced Defence Officer Boris Mancov announced the successful prototyping of an Imperial Navy "UAV Carrier". The Thaon Class vessel, named after the Inimician folk hero who successfully defeated a twelve-headed hydra off the Praestorian coast, is a conversion from Patria Class Corvettes, which have a range of nearly 8,000 nautical miles and a top speed of 30 knots. "Given drones' extremely limited size, developing smaller vessels with carrier capability has become a real possibility", the Drone Commissioner stated. "This, in turn, makes the Imperial Navy's Drone Fleet more flexible and far more stealth-capable."
The Imperial Navy is currently working on making virtually all its vessels capable of carrying at least one unmanned aerial vehicle (or UAV), following recent announcements of large-scale investments in technology that "prevents Inimician men and women from putting themselves in harm's way", as stated by the Defence Office. "UAVs offer a unique opportunity for cost-effective, efficient operations without the risk of losing Inimician lives. We have worked on developing an extensive UAV fleet for the past several months and continue to shape the Imperial Armed Forces around UAV capacity."
The Imperial Defence Office also announced the development of a specialised electronic warfare (EW) vessel to accompany recent investment in aerial EW capacity. EW operations include the flatlining of opponents' radar and electricity systems, hacking of communication channels to sew false orders and information, cyber-attacks, and mass gathering of intelligence through signals interception, among other actions. The Electric Class Electronic Warfare Vessel is to be developed from the Imperial Navy's standard patrol boat class, but upgraded with magnet electric engines. These offer "high reliability, high efficiency, low maintenance and low underwater radiated noise, essential for EW vessels", the Defence Office commented.
Imperial Official In North Diessen 'Defenestrated' - reports
Reitzmag Talks Proceeding "with extreme difficulty"
Defence Office Announces Inimician Production of F-35 Fighter Jet
Het Goor, North Diessen, 26/2/2022 -- Commander of the Imperial Guard Investigation Unit Albert Rosenfield, pictured, is reported to have been violently expulsed from the Presidential Palace in North Diessen, following the refusal of Inimician authorities to extradite a wanted terror suspect to its north neighbour. Nuntius Inimici sources claim seeing Rosenfield "dumped" from a second-storey window somewhere inside the Confederal government compound.
Rosenfield has been Inimicus's Special Envoy to the Confederacy of North Diessen since Imperial Armed Forces intervened in the Reuland Rebellion late last year. The German-speaking state illegally defected from the North Diessenian Confederacy but was swiftly brought back under central control after the Inimician intervention. Ties between Inimicus and North Diessen have since developed much more closely, with joint investment in large infrastructure projects such as the Artabanos Canal.
The last week, however, saw renewed tensions between the historic rivals over the extradition of a wanted terror suspect, who has reportedly met with His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos personally. Imperial authorities have so far denied to extradite the individual, citing "concerns" for their safety should they be returned to North Diessen.
Social media users in Inimicus have been swift to denounce the 'Defenestration of Het Goor'. The Imperial Palace has yet to comment on reports, although Imperial Councillor Basil Lawson -- a well-known defence expert -- suggested the Empire would "react with the harshest diplomatic measures" should these Defenestration reports be accurate. Calls for the Imperial Armed Forces to once again march into North Diessen gained traction on the internet in the early hours of this morning, although the Defence Office was swift to temper these sentiments, saying "The Empire of Inimicus and its Imperial Armed Forces would never violate the sovereignty of a neighbouring state."
Nyetthem, Vayinaod -- Inimico-Reitzmic de-escalation talks are progressing with "extreme difficulty", Imperial Foreign Officer Sarah Gladwell stated this morning. While "some progress" had been made in breaching an impasse in negotiations yesterday, "significant differences" still remained between the two government positions.
Reports suggest Inimician negotiators are attempting to gain reassurance the Kingdom of Reitzmag will never again apply for a nuclear weapons licence with the ENAA, while Reitzmic aims include an Inimician promise not to enter the Caspian Sea and not to station nuclear weapons at a proposed base in the Republic of Istkalen.
Nevertheless, sources further suggest Inimician demands for Reitzmic military promises not to enter the Straits of Gibraltar and Adventuranza and the Persian Gulf have fallen on deaf ears. One source commented: "Reitzmag sees its concession of nuclear weapons as hugely significant, and adding a ban on its ships entering what Inimicus sees as its waters of influence is seen as a far too stringent demand." Despite reported watering-down of these Inimician demands, Reitzmic negotiators appear adamant its navy will "go where it will".
In return, Inimicus appears to have suggested Imperial Navy ships will not enter territorial or claimed waters of Reitzmag and its allies, and to subject any possible bases in Istkalen to periodic Reitzmic inspection. These proposals were not seen to weigh up against what Reitzmic negotiations see as highly impactful Inimician demands, however.
Talks are set to continue in Nyetthem with the aim of finalising a Treaty of Detente as soon as practicable.
Orbis Terrarum, 26/2/2022 - The Imperial Defence Arsenal has announced the start of its production of the F-35 Lightning II multi-role fighter jet. Having worked closely with Duxburian developers of the state-of-the-art aircraft, the IDA expects the first units to enter production sometime in March. "Commencing production of a new line of military equipment is a hugely complex operation", the IDA's regional chairwoman Anke Gnoyle comments, "And it will take weeks, if not months, for the Orbis Terrarum facility to switch from production of the Eurofighter Typhoon to the F-35."
Given the novelty of the F-35 production line at the IDA's Orbis Terrarum Assembly Office, the first F-35s are not scheduled to roll off the production lines until later this year, with a possible, tentative first date of completion given as June 2022. The IDA reassured stakeholders in the Inimician Eurofighter project that the Empire will still use, produce, and continue to develop Eurofighter Typhoon jets alongside the F-35. Eurofighters make up the majority of the Imperial Air Force's fighter fleet at present, and Inimician Eurofighters have been exported to Inimicus's allies such as the Kingdom of Spain.
The addition of the F-35 to the Imperial Air Force's armoury marks a large development in its operational capacity. F-35 jets include up to ten air-to-air and air-to-surface missiles as well as state-of-the-art radar and reconnaisance equipment. The renewed focus of the Imperial Defence Office on electronic and cyberwarfare capabilities appears to have been a factor in the decision to produce the new jets, as F-35s include short-range cyberwarfare and signals intelligence equipment.
Defenestrated Commander Rosenfield Vows Revenge
Diessenar Terror Suspect Named, Denies Allegations with Imperial Support
Was Diessen's Manhunt for Suspect a Ploy for Mueller's Autocracy?
Commander of the Imperial Guard Investigation Unit and Special Envoy to North Diessen Albert Rosenfield made a public statement vowing "absolute and remorseless revenge" against the perpetrators of the attack against him. The statement, apparently released from somewhere inside the North Diessenar capital of Het Goor - where Rosenfield is understood to be recuperating - further suggests the attackers were individuals with official capacity in the Diessenar government: "President Mueller knows the scoundrels who attempted to kill me", Rosenfield alleges. He further claims the attack happened "Not two metres from President Mueller's desk", which appears to corroborate reports that the defenestration occurred near to, or even from the window of, the Diessenar Presidential Office.
It is unclear to what extent Rosenfield's statement was made in his official capacity as Special Envoy. "It is uncommon at best for Imperial officials to take such a personal, vengeful stance", comments Imperial Councillor Dilkes Ayla, "And if Rosenfield was given permission by His Imperial Majesty for this rant -- which I could not imagine he was -- that constitutes a grave breach of political responsibility.
The contents of Rosenfield's revenge are as yet unclear. In his statement, however, the Commander mentions "opening the Pandora's box of the North Diessenar state" and "informing the region and the world of what goes on behind the screens". No independently verifiable sources have reported corruption or oppression within the Confederal Government of North Diessen, however. Dilkes Ayla IC comments: "We shall see what Rosenfield comes up with. If it is anything of substance, and anything supported by evidence, we will take appropriate steps, especially if our involvement with the suppression of the Reuland rebellion late last year is somehow related to this."
The Imperial Palace has been approached for comment.
The terror suspect at the heart of the current diplomatic tensions between North Diessen and the Empire of Inimicus has come forward and named himself as Nestor Karaman, up until recently employed as a journalist for Diessenar newspaper the Hilverbode. In a press release from the Imperial Palace, where the Emperor has temporarily housed Karaman, the refugee journalist said he had been "accused of the most heinous crimes imaginable" but is convinced he is "innocent on every single charge." He further accused North Diessen authorities of a manhunt against "everything that is free press in the country."
The Imperial Palace confirmed Karaman had been given temporary housing inside the Imperial Palace, a privilege usually awarded only to high-ranking political refugees and personal friends and family of His Imperial Majesty. Imperial Consul Simge Galanth, who has assumed leadership of the Inimican response to Karaman's situation, declared Karaman "was an honoured guest of His Imperial Majesty for the time being, owing to his status as the centre of a large political development at present and the concerns we have for his safety."
Sources at the Imperial Guard suggest North Diessen's government have been attempting to bring Karaman back to their jurisdiction, including an attempted kidnapping during Karaman's journey from a temporary detention centre in Inimicus's northwest to the capital. This kidnapping appears to have been foiled by the Imperial Guard before it could materialise. Consul Galanth called this attempt "an utter disgrace", and called upon Ekrem Mueller's government to "resolve our differences at the negotiating table rather than the battlefield."
Rumours from inside the Imperial Palace suggests Karaman and the Emperor have struck up an immediate friendship. One source comments the two "spend most time either one has free in each other's company". His Imperial Majesty has taken a keen interest in North Diessenar affairs ever since His attempted assassination in Summer 2020, leading to Inimician intervention in the Reuland Rebellion last year.
In related news, accusations of corruption and usurpation from Inimician politicians against North Diessen's President Ekrem Mueller have surged today, following Nestor Karaman's revelations. Imperial Councillor Basil Lawson, who specialises in defence matters and has previously received the Imperial Prerogative on defence matters, stated in the Council today: "All signs point to a violent takeover by Ekrem Mueller late last year, as a result of the Reuland Rebellion." Other accusations come from Emperor's Commissioner Sven Kockelman, who demands Mueller "come clean, and come clean for real this time."
Emperor Artabanos Buys Drone Models for Inimician Children after Fleet Inspection
Above: His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos (right) and Drone Commissioner Mancov at the National Drone Show; Below: one of the one million drone models the Emperor pledged to donate to children in need
Undisclosed top-notch armaments, extensive electronic warfare capacity, fittings for tactical nuclear warheads, and deployment within mere hours anywhere in the region. The promises of Imperial Drone Commissioner and disgraced former Defence Officer Boris Mancov were extensive, yet at today's National Drone Show in Portus Inimici, these promises became real. Unveiling the revamped P.1HH reconnaisance vehicle and the brand new P.2HH attack drones, Commissioner Mancov pledged these craft "usher in a brand new era of warfare", and assured His Imperial Majesty that "whenever and wherever You see fit, a full deployment of the Empire's might is merely hours away, guided from the comforts of the Imperial Palace."
Mancov also used his 20-minute address, which followed a two-hour display of the new UAVs' capabilities in front of a huge crowd, to announce further developments in what he terms the nation's "New Generation Strike Force", including a renewed policy of two Imperial Navy Fleets being at sea at any given moment, making use of intensified relations with Inimicus's allies for supply and rearmament. The conversion of several of the Navy's light aircraft carriers to so-called "Drone Carriers" is also thought to be completed. These ships have further been retrofitted with "the latest and best" electronic warfare systems, claimed Mancov.
New Generation UAVs and electronic warfare capacities are currently being spread far and wide to Imperial Navy ships, Imperial Air Force detachments, and Imperial Army units around the region. "The sheer omnipresence of the New Generation Strike Force makes it a force to be reckoned with", said His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos at the drone show, "That, and the fact they can carry nukes. Everyone loves a good nuke." UAVs are also reported to be in transit to the recently opened Imperial Armed Forces base in Istkalen, although, as per treaty agreement, no nuclear armaments are set to be transferred there.
Emperor Artabanos further pledged to donate one million airfix models of the P.1HH to "children's hospices and young people's homes around My Empire", with the broad aim of "educating and inspiring the new generation about the New Generation." When asked whether part of the ƒ2bn fund used for development of the new drones would be used for this donation, the Emperor replied: "Can't an Emperor buy a gift for His children? Besides, doing model aircraft is my second favourite activity, besides doing -- actually, er, there are children around, aren't there. Nevermind."
In line with today's announcements, the 2nd and 3rd Fleets of the Imperial Navy set sail from Portus Inimici today, reportedly carrying up to 125 P.2HHs and an undisclosed number of P.1HH units. It is unknown whether nuclear armaments are also being carried. The two fleets have been ordered to patrol, combat piracy and illicit smuggling, and to provide logistics and humanitarian assistance wherever necessary.
Artabanos's Answers, May 2022:
Nuntius Inimici's Primary Palace News
Are the Commons Elections Even Happening?
His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos has yet to confirm whether elections for the House of Commons will take place this month, as is customary. Inimicus's lower house of the Imperial Diet sits every June for one month, and is usually called together by an Imperial Decree issuing powers to hold elections. Last year's Commons, however, saw widespread dissatisfaction among the Inimician public with proceedings in the House, leading the Emperor to threaten to re-arrange the current Commons arrangements if behaviour did not improve. The Constitution of the Empire of Inimicus mandates the Commons are to sit for one month every year; this implies the Emperor has until the end of this calendar year to either call an election, or amend the Constitution.
Did Strathclyde just confirm an Inimician nuclear triad?
During his weekly press session, Imperial Consul Christopher Strathclyde appears to have semi-accidentally betrayed part of Inimicus's nuclear arms strategy. A Nuntius Inimici reporter queried the Consul on the recent announcement that two of three Imperial Navy fleets are to be at sea permanently from now on, and will carry several advanced electronic and unmanned weaponry systems. Consul Strathclyde suggested that Imperial Air Force and Navy unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) may indeed be armed with components of the Inimician nuclear stockpile: "The Imperial Armed Forces' new P.2HH design carries a larger payload of up to 700kg, or 1500lbs. Although the specifications of the Imperial Nuclear Arsenal remain undisclosed under the Imperial Secrets Act, you will know most Inimician nuclear weapons weigh between 500 and 1000kg. Our lighter weapons are therefore suitable for this type of deployment, whereas ---"
The Palace refused to outright confirm or deny whether drones carrying nuclear weaponry are currently airborne or deployed with the Imperial Navy, however, further questioning caused the Consul to state: "Of course, for our heaviest warheads we still rely on our intercontinental missiles and bombers."
The existence of three branches of Inimicus's nuclear deterrence has never been confirmed: the Palace has always been deliberately mute when discussing the Empire's nuclear armament. However, with a land-based component in the form of ICBMs and mobile launchers, a sea-based component with carrier-mounted drones, and an airborne component using the Imperial Air Force, such a triad of nuclear capacity now seems all but confirmed.
What's going on with the Emperor and the Diessenar President?
Exchanges of more-than-political compliments, arrangements for weekly joint visits and inspections of Canal works, and immediate state visits just days after taking office: the relationship between His Imperial Majesty Emperor Artabanos and newly elected Confederal President Ekrem Karaman of North Diessen appear already in high spirits. Rumours that the Artabanos Foundation part-funded Karaman's campaign only add to the suspicion that the two statesmen have an immensely friendly standing.
The Emperor-President duo today released details of arrangements for joint inspection of the Artabanos Canal works and a "business lunch" to take place on a weekly basis, at least "until such time as Canal works are complete". Mueller and Artabanos are also scheduled to appear at the Imperial Palace on Friday, during Mueller's first formal state visit since becoming President. While foreign dignitaries are generally housed in nearby state-sponsored hotels during state visits (if they stay overnight at all), Palace sources confirm Mueller and his entourage have been afforded one of the greatest honours the Emperor may bestow on guests: a stay in His Palace.
Shortest House of Commons Campaign in Living Memory Kicks Off
Inimician Liberal Appeal leader Michael Dowding campaigns in Lacerta
Empire-wide, 12th May 2022 -- With His Imperial Majesty's Decree calling for House of Commons elections on May 15th, Inimician political parties have been scrambling to arrange campaign materials and rallies in the three days remaining before ballot day. Emperor's Movement leader and former European Councillor Hetty Tilki was seen leafleting in Telum, while the Inimician Liberal Appeal's Michael Dowding was seen at makeshift rallies in Lacerta, the Centre-Conservative Union's Henman Vern spoke to grassroots supporters in Terra Domini, and the Central Progressive Party and United Green Front came together in Portus Inimici to announce a formal electoral alliance.
The four-day campaign window is the shortest in living memory, with only the 1802 Parliamentary election being scheduled with less notice. At that time, the new Republican government called for elections to occur the very next day -- however, the electorate at the time was decidedly smaller. His Imperial Majesty justified the brief time window for campaigning in a press statement this morning, in which He declared "all evidence and all polling shows Inimicians are tired of the House of Commons and everything that comes with it." Indeed, early reports suggest Sunday's turn-out could be as low as 30-40%, which would make this year's ballot the least well-attended in Inimician history.
Dissatisfaction with the House of Commons has a long tradition in Inimicus. The original, pre-2014 House sat permanently as Inimicus's most important legislative body. Following mass corruption and expenses scandals, Emperor Artabanos dissolved the Commons indefinitely upon His accession. The House now sits every year in June and has still been riddled with scandal every session. Last year, People's Movement leader Adolf Danube attempted to prescribe Inimicus's national votes for European Commission, resulting in His Imperial Majesty having to step in to work out a compromise. Public support for the Commons has consequently dropped from over 68% in 2018 to well under 50% now.
Polling suggests a large lead for Tilki's Emperor's Finest, whose main policy appears to be the abolition of the Parliamentary system in the first place. The Finest are followed closely by traditiona arch-enemies the Inimician Liberal Appeal and the Centre-Conservative Union. The People's Movement, whose platform centers around opposition to the Imperial system of succession and the immediate impeachment of His Imperial Majesty, trail in fourth place, at around the same level of support as the new Progessive-Green alliance led by veteran politician and convicted would-be assassin Jeff Speller.
Emperor's Finest Storm Commons Again as Turnout Reaches Historic Low --//-- Emperor Artabanos Proposes Merger of Crown Court and Imperial Council
Finest Leader Hetty Tilki speaks to Good Morning Inimicus following her election win
Telum 19th May 2022 -- The Imperial Electoral Commission this morning certified the full results of the 2022 House of Commons election, held last Sunday. The Emperor's Finest movement achieved a slim working majority in the 2022 Parliament, holding 382 out of 750 seats. These gains appear to have mostly resulted from a collapse in the United Progressive vote (the joint electoral alliance between the United Green Front and Central Progressive Party), whose share fell by over 40% compared to 2021.
The Inimician Liberals and Centre-Conservatives report modest losses compared to 2021, at the expense of the Finest and, perhaps especially, the People's Movement, who were the only other party to gain seats, winning 104 this Parliament compared to 90 last year. People's Movement support expanded from its traditional base in Terra Quaestoris to the outskirts of larger cities such as Lacerta and Portus Inimici, while support for the Finest was strongest in and around Terra Praestoris and the Telum Capital District.
Turnout for the 2022 Commons election fell by more than 35% compared to last year, when the proportion of voters who showed up was already considered low at 68%. The Imperial Electoral Commission counted a total turnout of 33%, the lowest ever recorded in Inimician history. Emperor's Finest leader Hetty Tilki, who spoke to Good Morning Inimicus this morning, was therefore cautious to celebrate her party's victory, calling the results "a strong slap in the face for the parliamentary system." Her movement was the only party that ran on an outspoken anti-Commons platform, and suggested their MPs would use their powers in an attempt to dissolve the Commons as soon as possible. With a Finest majority gathering in Telum this June, that prospect is becoming more likely.
Nevertheless, as Tilki commented, "abolition of a body of the Imperial Diet requires a constitutional amendment", which the Commons does not have the power to enact. Only the National Imperial Council, at the prompting of one of its Acts or an Imperial Decree, could formally abolish the Commons. Next month will no doubt show how Tilki and the Finest will attempt to fulfill their programme.
Party 2021 Parliament 2022 Parliament Change United Progressive Front 64 (as UFG/CPP) 37 (4.9%) -42% Inimician Liberal Appeal 143 125 (16.7%) -12% Centre-Conservative Union 102 97 (12.9%) -5% Emperor's Finest 292 382 (50.9%) +31% People's Movement 90 104 (13.9%) +16% Independents 9 5 (0.7%) -44%
In related constitutional news, His Imperial Majesty proposed a formal motion in the National Imperial Council yesterday afternoon to merge the functions of the Imperial Crown Court with those of the Council. Justifying what He called a "necessary streamlining" of the judicial process, His Imperial Majesty commented "this place, the true representation of the Inimician Peoples, should have the final say in determining the guilt of our most notorious criminals."
The Imperial Crown Court is the Empire's highest judicial authority in both civil and criminal cases. The Emperor traditionally presides over sittings, as He did when convicted traitors Maximillian and Augustus Barrington were sentenced to life inprisonment last year. Constitutional scholars appear ambivalent about the proposed changes, with one commenting the Court "is already an institution presided by His Imperial Majesty", and that therefore, transferring the Court's powers to the NIC would imply "virtually zero practical changes".
A two-thirds majority of NIC votes must now be cast in favour of the Emperor's proposal, which would enact a constitutional amendment adding judicial functions to the Article XLIII list of NIC duties. Given that the Emperor commands 15 of the 35 NIC votes, it is expected this proposal will succeed relatively rapidly.