BELGRADE – According to the internationally recognized law of terra nullius (“nobody’s land”), if no one has a claim on land, anyone at all can claim it as their own. Or at least they can try.
This is how Czech politician and activist Vít Jedlička founded Liberland, a sliver of land along the Danube River between Croatia and Serbia that went unclaimed after Yugoslavia was dissolved in the 1990s.
Essentially, Jedlička called terra nullius and declared the land to be Liberland, a Libertarian utopia in the heart of Eastern Europe. Although Serbia seems okay with the idea, Croatia has been less receptive. It’s been arresting wannabe Liberlandians for trespassing — including Jedlička.
But that hasn’t stopped him from pursuing recognition for his country. One year after planting the flag, Vit has called together a conference to mark the first anniversary of Liberland. But best laid plans fall apart when Vit tries to attend.