2040 Minoa unrest
The Semester of Blood was a major unrest and political crisis that affected Minoa during the last half of 2040. The unrest – characterised by a series of demonstrations, riots, massacres and strikes – crippled the country that was already at war with Libya at the time.
The unrest was triggered by the fatal shooting of 26-year-old Jamaal Abdullah by officers of the Metropolitan Police Service on 6 August 2040 in Petroupoli, Antjepolis (now Athens). A demonstration that took place in the area the following day turned violent when a police officer arresting a person on suspicion of public disorder was shot dead. The violence quickly descended into rampant looting and arson attacks of unprecedented levels. The riots then spread across other parts of Antjepolis and into major cities of Minoa over the next few days, worsened by tit-for-tat attacks by both rioters and vigilante groups. United Nations Peacekeepers were called in by the then Prime Minister Seetha Bhattacharya on Monday 13 August, but were quickly driven out by rioters and vigilantes.
The riots escalated into a major crackdown from Wednesday 22 August, when parts of the Minoan armed forces – assisting vigilante groups and revengeful victims – stormed the affected cities, resulting in heavy casualties. The crackdown resulted in Antalya losing the 2042 Summer Youth Olympics on 28 August and the suspension of Minoa from the Council of Europe two days later, triggering a bloody political crisis that brought down the Bhattacharya government on 2 September. Three days later, television newscaster Helena Beaulieu seized power during a news conference.
Empress Antje, whose mental and physical health suffered greatly due to the unrest, forfeited Ohi Day and the Christmas holidays in retaliation to the unrest. This triggered violent general strikes (known as the Siege of Minoa) that paralysed the country until she abdicated on Christmas Day.
The Semester of Blood resulted in the secession of Charlotte Ryberg on 6 October 2041, and the international isolation of Minoa until early-2043. At least $846 million (£6.96 billion) worth of property damage was incurred, and disruption to economic activity – as well as the total abandonment of Ilioupoli and Petroupoli – triggered a short recession in Minoa. Helena Beaulieu, who was praised for halting the riots, before successfully persuading Empress Antje to step down, became Minoa’s second Empress on 17 January 2041 after a successful election.
On Monday 13 August, the Common and Upper Yuans were recalled. Bhattacharya announced assistance for homes and businesses affected by the riots.
"22 August" Crackdown
Loss of the Youth Olympics
On Tuesday 28 August, the International Olympic Committee announced that it had revoked Antalya's right to host the 2042 Summer Youth Olympics : the games were later awarded to São Paulo. Almost two-thirds of the MP agreed to a vote of no confidence, which would take place in the following day.
On Wednesday 29 August, Bhattacharya's government collapsed through a successful vote of no confidence and a motion for her suspension from office.
On Thursday 30 August, the Electoral Commission announced that a general elections would not be called due to the intensity of the unrest. The Dame of Minoa announced that the Minoan Transitional Council (MTC) would be reformed to convene on Monday 3 September.
Helena Beaulieu steps in
On Monday 3 September, Members of the newly reformed MTC elected Helena Beaulieu as Acting Prime Minister.
On Friday 31 August, the military was deployed to Athens, coming under heavy attack from rioters and vigilantes for several days.
The Siege of Minoa
Downfall of Empress Antje
On Sunday 4 November, Empress Antje of Minoa announced in the Diwali address that the Electoral Commission was accepting candidates for the Head of State elections from Monday, abetting rumours of her resignation.
On Tuesday 25 December, Empress Antje announced her resignation.
Use of capital punishment
- Main article: Capital Punishment in Minoa
The magnitude of anger and despair among the general public and unrest victims influenced Empress Antje’s decision to allow the courts sentence 20 key perpetrators of the unrest to death for crimes against humanity, genocide, or both. The eventual execution of ten such perpetrators, between 19th December 2040 and 27th March 2041, contributed to the first major setback in Minoa’s human rights record since its formation. In 2040, Minoa ranked twelfth worldwide in Amnesty International’s Execution Rankings Index. In 2041, Minoa ranked eighth.
On 1st April 2041, Empress Helena suspended the death penalty and lodged an appeal on behalf of the remaining death row prisoners. In August 2041, the Criminal Appeals Court commuted their sentences to between 15 to 21 years minimum, in line with the emerging Norwegian-style sentencing policy.
Impact and Aftermath
610 people (including three UN peacekeepers, three members of parliament and 41 police officers) died and at least 1 167 others were injured as a direct result of the whole unrest (including the political fallout), although initial government estimates were significantly higher due to the war with Libya, which was happening at the same time.
An estimated $311 million (£2.56 billion) worth of property damage was incurred, and economic activity was significantly compromised, triggering a two-year recession in Minoa and affecting global financial markets. However, a combination of "prosperity" measures (prosperity being the antonym of austerity) to restore public confidence allowed the economy to slowly return to growth (starting with 0.7% by the end of 2043).
The International Organization for Migration confirmed that despite efforts for help those affected by the riots, a large number of people made homeless fled and defected from Minoa for their safety, amid loss of trust in the government overall. The riots also resulted in stagnation in population growth, according to the 2043 census.
The heavily affected suburbs of Ilioupoli and Petroupoli came to worldwide attention for its shock decline after the unrest. By the summer of 2041, the two suburbs resembled the aftermath of the atomic bombings on Hiroshima and Nagasaki, in 1945. In September 2041, the Neumann Government formed the Outer Athens Development Corporation (OADC) to redevelop the suburbs. The OADC oversaw the reconstruction of the two suburbs into a mixture of residential, commercial and light industrial space.
Territorial and administrative changes
The unrest resulted in major territorial and political changes. On 6 October 2041, Charlotte Ryberg declared independence from Minoa following a successful referendum that was largely dubbed as a "vote of no confidence" against Minoa, on 3 May 2041.
The Antjepolis Metropolitan Police and the Metropolitan Counties of Antalya, Antjepolis, Charlotte Island and Ydra, all of which were condemned for the lack of response the unrest, were abolished on 1 April 2042 as part of the overall boundary changes. Antalya was split into separate Eastern and Western Authorities, with each administering 50% of the historic city centre. The name of the Minoan capital reverted to Athens when Greater Antjepolis, Charlotte Island and Ydra were absorbed into a single Metropolitan County, with policing now provided by six separate forces: Hymettus (South Athens), Inner Athens (Inner and East Athens), Islands (Athenian Fens), Maroussi Valley (North Athens), Pateras (West Athens) and San Andreas. The San Andreas force was created specifically to restore law and order in a district which has an abnormally high crime rate, and is still home to most of Minoa's organised crime rings.
Withdrawal from sporting events
Minoa withdrew from the 2042 FIFA World Cup and the 2042 Summer Youth Olympics in São Paulo, as well as many other international sports competitions in 2042. However, arrangements were made for Minoan competitors to compete as part of another national team.
The unrest continues to invoke a strong opinions from communities affected by the unrest. For five years after the unrest, the Minoan army was deployed to some of the affected communities to prevent the possibility of another unrest occurring. Despite comprehensive attempts by the Minoan Government to promote reconciliation, major incidents have occurred, most of which were close to the anniversaries.
- On 29th July 2041, a relative of an unrest victim broke into the flat of one of the rioters in Keratsina. He shot dead the rioter (on bail at the time) and the entire family, before burning down the flat. The police arrested him at the scene and the murder trial is ongoing.
- On 7th August 2041, a man made homeless from the riots committed suicide in a high-street car bomb at Nicomedia (Izmit), killing a soldier and six people, and injuring 142 others. The man had fled from Athens to Nicomedia after the unrest.
- Since 1st August 2042, the Minoan Government have banned commemorative gatherings in Ilioupoli and Petroupoli, because of the risk of violence.
- On 6th August 2042, a woman opened fire from a department store window, on the crowd that attended an anniversary event at Anthoupoli. She killed one and wounded four others.
- On 4th October 2043, a truck bomb exploded on a rural road near Spata Prison, where a number of rioters were incarcerated. No one was hurt, but the police have not yet found the driver, believed to be involved in the unrest.
- On 22nd August 2045, a rally in Thessaloniki ended in violence, injuring 341 people. The riot resulted in a city centre-wide night-time curfew for seven days.
- On 9th August 2046, a woman attacked a reformed rioter, who was delivering a speech during the ceremonial inauguration of the Julie Jahoda memorial in the newly-opened Civil War Museum. The rioter was seriously injured. The incident resulted in scuffles outside the museum, forcing Empress Helena and the Primer Minister of Poland to leave for their safety, having delivered their speeches beforehand.
The Polish Quarter of the Civil War Museum now stands on the spot where Julie Jahoda committed suicide.
Legal questions relating to the status of the deaths as a genocide
While the events in 2040 are widely considered to be crimes against humanity and referred to as such, some argue that the scale of the unrest may satisfy the definition of a civil war.