Jabalein WIKI

Jabalein

The Republic of Jabalein is a land-locked Middle Eastern country situated ‘between two mountains,’ as the name suggests. As a result of overlapping land agreements, Jabalein became an independent country in 1912, and is compromised of 5 municipalities spanning an area of 6400 square kilometers. In keeping with its founding, Jabalein remains neutral in its foreign policy, and relies on strong agricultural exports and a growing services sector to fuel its economy. Though it boasts a varied ethnic and religious population, the country maintains a strong sense of national identity, and remains bound by its common historical roots.


  • Government and Politics

    Jabalein is a presidential representative democratic republic, lead by the directly elected President and his/her Deputy President. The president is both head of state and head of the government, and can serve for two consecutive five- year terms. The National Elections Committee officially monitors elections; campaigns last 3 months maximum.

    In case of the President’s incapacitation, the Deputy President resumes the Presidency until regularly scheduled elections can occur. As of a recent constitutional amendment (101c), in case of the Deputy’s inability to rule, the Minister of Development and Planning resumes the Presidency. The 3rd in line was formerly the Minister of Defense. The amendment met with staunch criticism in the National Assembly, but an unusual coalition of the Left and Centrist parties passed it by a small margin. With former President Nour al Din’s most recent death, and his deputy’s forced resignation, the amendment became recently applicable and brought Mrs. Noura Sa’ad to power. Sa’ad became the first female President of Jabalein.

    The Presidential cabinet is by appointment.  There are 14 Ministers, each subject to the President’s executive directives. According to national quotas, at least 3 ministers must be women.

    • Ministry of Defense
    • Ministry of Foreign Affairs
    • Ministry of Finance
    • Ministry of Industry and Trade
    • Ministry of Justice
    • Ministry of the Interior and Municipalities
    • Ministry of Development and Planning
    • Ministry of Education
    • Ministry of Health
    • Ministry of Energy and Environmen
    • Ministry of Social Affairs
    • Ministry of Labor
    • Ministry of Agriculture
    • Ministry of Transportation

    The legislative branch is composed of the National Assembly, a unicameral body of 40 directly elected members. Each of the 10 voting districts elects 4 representatives, each with a 3 year term. The majority party elects a Speaker of the Assembly, who is responsible for setting the agenda, nominating committees, and maintaining decorum while in session.

    Candidates typically fall into one of the three main political parties, though a small number represent special interests, such as the Green Party and the Farmers Coalition. The assembly is currently run by the Conservative party (44%), followed by the Centrists (33%) and the Progressive party (21%). Alternative interests make up (2%) of representatives. The Conservative and Centrist parties typically trade control over the legislature, while the Progressives tip the scales in either direction.

    The Judiciary branch is independent of the Executive and Legislative systems, and consists of 10 district level courts, 3 Appellate courts, and the National Supreme Court. Law deemed unconstitutional can be struck down by the Supreme court, and amendments to the constitution must also pass their vote.

  • Administrative Divisions

    Jabalein is divided into 5 municipalities, totaling 6,400 km2 in land mass.   Each region (muhafatha) has a local government headed by an elected mayor and county council, who serve in five year terms. The mayors are responsible to the Ministry of the Interior and Municipalities, who in turn manage governmental subsides to the regional governments. Each muhafatha typically holds a yearly local festival, celebrating the area’s music, dancing, and food, culminating in a nationwide pomegranate competition, which the President customarily judges. The prize for the most beautiful fruit rotates between the governorates. 

  • Economy

    Jabalein maintains a national GDP of $2.5 billion dollars, with a 1.0% yearly growth rate. After reaching historic lows of .08% growth during the economic crisis, the country has recovered slightly. Economic activity is based primarily in the agricultural (25%), services (50%), and tourism sectors (15%), with limited production of industrial minerals, mainly potash (10%). Exports include honey, olive oil, figs, wheat, and pomegranate, while the tech sector presents the largest increases in growth after the government’s liberalization of certain investment ceilings.  However, economic growth remains restricted by high import taxes and invasive business regulation, and the country registers low rates of business start ups and direct foreign investment. Average per capita income remains between $1,026-$4,300 yearly, with unemployment rising to 19% of the working age population, and 30% of the population under 21. Public debt remains high at 74% of national GDP, with average inflation of 2.3% per year. 

  • Foreign Affairs

    Since its founding, Jabalein has maintained a neutral stance in international and regional affairs, preferring to remain relatively isolationist in its engagement strategy. As the ‘Switzerland of the Middle East,’ Jabalein maintains a National Guard to defend the country, while internal intelligence (mukhabarat al aama) monitors domestic threats.   

    Jabalein is a member of the United Nations, and is a signatory to many agreements, namely the Geneva Convention, the Convention on the Rights of a Child, the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination, the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women, and the Kyoto Protocols. The country also has a history of hosting refugees from the region, and has worked closely with multiple international agencies to ensure their safety and settlement.  

  • Religion

    Jabalein is one of the most religiously diverse countries in the region.  Represented are Islam, Christianity, Druze, Ba’hai, Buddhist and ‘other.’   Citizens are proud of their religious diversity and tolerance. 

  • Military

    A National Guard protects Jabalein’s borders, though it has been criticized for being technologically out of date.  The civilian police force is tasked with maintaining law and order, and a small secret service protects the President.  Both men and women serve in all units upon reaching the age of 18, but there is no national compulsory service. 

  • Demographics

    Jabalein is country of 1.6 million people, with 86% of the population living in urban areas, primarily the capital (450,000). The country continues to be heavily dominated by its youth population. The average age of residents is 21 years, with 27% of the population under 14, and 20% between 15-24. Thanks to extensive primary and secondary education enrollment, adult literacy is 97% of the population, with nearly 78% of citizens enrolling in some form of post secondary education. Nonetheless, Jabalein loses on average 4,000 highly educated citizens yearly, and struggles to keep its most talented employed within its borders.

  • Climate and Geography

    Jabalein is made up of three distinct biospheres; Alpine mountains, semi arid plains, and a fertile valley. The country is centered between the two highest mountain peaks (3,126 meters in altitude), which are covered with rich forests of pine and oak trees. The Liqaa river runs through the middle of the valley, flowing south from its source across the north eastern border, and has been diverted at various places to promote agricultural activity in the arid southern region. Jabalein also has small ground water reserves, however persistent drought and rising temperatures have forced the country to overdraw its resources, and the water table remains dangerously low. The country is also dotted with geothermal hot springs in the mountains, and they have high potential for exploitation as alternative energy. Average temperatures remain around 20° C, with hot and dry summers and cool rainy winters. The mountainous regions do receive a significant amount of snow every winter, which remains until late spring due to lower temperatures year round. 

  • National Symbols

    Jabalein’s national colors are sunny yellow, turquoise blue, and navy. The flag’s body is a vibrant blue, bringing to mind the country’s peaceful blue skies and open future, while its yellow pine cone symbolizes prosperity and plenty. The navy border signifies the country’s strength and unity, representing the motto ‘Equality amongst Diversity.’

    Jabalein’s national bird is the Eurasian Jay (Abu Zreiq), found mostly in the country’s lush oak forests.The Jay’s blue, black and white feathers mirror the national colors, and symbolize Jabalein’s freedom and independence. As a common feature of Middle Eastern skylines, the bird represents the country’s connection to its people, and the region as a whole. The national flower is the pure white Winter Crocus, whose petals and early spring opening represent the country’s rebirth and renewal. It can be found at the bottom of mountains, reminding us of Jabalein’s continuous innovation and progress. At the flower’s center is a burst of hope for the country’s future.

  • People and Society

    Jabalein has a long history of ethnic and religious diversity, its inhabitants having settled within the national borders from all around the region. This plurality is protected by the national constitution, which recognizes the rights of its citizens to practice the religion of their choice. The official language is Modern Standard Arabic, though each region has its own specific dialect. Other more minor languages are also kept alive in the family setting. 

 

 

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