Talking about youngest newest countries, we mean countries that got their independence as lately as the 1990s. These are the newest additions to the countries of the world. A glance down the list of the nine newest countries below reveals that each situation of independence is unique:
Even so, a glance back at history show that the world’s borders are changing more than we might appreciate: And the changes can sometimes take some time to settle.
July 2011 – South Sudan
South Sudan declared independence from Sudan on July 9, 2011, after a bloody civil war with the ethnically Arab north that had lasted decades. Almost 99 percent of voters had voted for independence in a referendum, and the new country was swiftly recognized by the international community. The United States played a key role in the South Sudan’s journey to statehood.
February 2008 – Kosovo
Kosovo declared independence from Serbia on Feb. 17, 2008. The country had been administered by the United Nations since 1999, when NATO bombed Serbia and forced then-President Slobodan Milosevic to withdraw his troops from the ethnically divided province.
Kosovo’s post-independence statehood has not been free of problems: Ethnic tension and organized crime remain, and the country’s economy is clearly underdeveloped (the official unemployment rate last year was 45 percent).
June 2006 – Montenegro and Serbia
The single nation of Serbia and Montenegro, formed after the collapse of Yugoslavia in 1991, changed into the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro in 2003, and finally into the two separate states of Serbia and Montenegro in 2006.
Since independence, Montenegro has applied for E.U. membership, joined the World Trade Organization, and rehabilitated its long-exiled monarchy. Generally, it’s economic record since independence has been viewed positively.
May 2002 – East Timor
East Timor, now also known as Timor-Leste, achieved independence on May 20, 2002, but the country had effectively voted for independence years before, when a referendum delivered a clear vote that clearly rejected the proposed “special autonomy” within Indonesia. After that referendum, there was brutal violence in the region with pro-Indonesian militias attacking citizens, and a special U.N. force had to be deployed to the country.
October 1994 – Palau
Palau, geographically part of the larger Micronesia island group in the western Pacific Ocean, is the least populated country on this list, with a little over 21,000 people living on around 250 islands. It became independent on Oct. 1, 1994, 15 years after it had decided against becoming part of Micronesia due to cultural and linguistic differences.
The islands that make up Palau had passed through various colonial hands over the years, before coming under the United Nations Trust Territory of the Pacific, administered by the United States, after World War II.
April 1993 – Eritrea
The United Nations established Eritrea as an autonomous region within the Ethiopian federation in 1952. However, when Ethiopia, under emperor Haile Selassie, annexed the region in 1962, it sparked a civil war that lasted 30 years. In 1991, the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) ousted the Ethiopian forces, and on April 27, 1993, the country declared independence after a referendum.
Since independence, there have been a number of disputes with Ethiopia, including a border war in 1998 that lasted more than two years.
January 1993 – The Czech Republic and Slovakia
On Jan. 1, 1993, Czechoslovakia was dissolved by parliament into two countries: The Czech Republic and Slovakia. After the “Velvet Revolution” ended one-party Communist rule, it was the “Velvet Divorce.”