The Pirate Parties International Court of Arbitration was requested by Pirate Party UK to rule on the validity of the acceptance of Pirates of Catalonia as an Ordinary Member of Pirate Parties International, which was voted by the General Assembly on April 15th, 2012, in Prague.
The Court found that the acceptance of Pirates of Catalonia does not breach the current statutes rule of "there can only be one Ordinary Member per country" (article IV, paragraph 2). However, the court strongly suggests that the Statutes be amended at the next General Assembly of Pirate Parties International to change the term "country" to one that is less ambiguous, or to provide, within the statutes, a definition of what is meant.
Court of Arbitration ruling n°2012-3, May the 15th
THE PIRATE PARTIES INTERNATIONAL COURT OF ARBITRATION,
Given the Pirate Parties International Statutes,
Given the minutes of the Pirate Parties International General Assembly of April 14th and 15th in Prague,
Given the query of Pirate Party UK,
Given the reasoning of Pirates of Catalonia,
Given the definition of the word "country,"
1) Considering the Pirate Parties International General Assembly has voted in Prague to grant Ordinary Membership to Pirates of Catalonia.
2) Considering Section IV, paragraph 2 of the Pirate Parties International Statutes states that there can be only one Ordinary Member per country.
3) Considering Pirate Party of Spain was already an Ordinary Member of the Pirate Parties International.
4) Considering Pirate Party UK asked the Court of Arbitration to rule whether the acceptance of Pirates of Catalonia would breach the Pirate Parties International statutes, particularly: - Section III (Membership), - Section IV (Ordinary Members) paragraph 2, - Section VI (Multiple applicants from one country) paragraph 1.
5) Considering Catalonia is currently covering a territory that is part of the sovereign state of Spain.
6) Considering the word "country" can be defined in different ways: as "sovereign state" or as "territory of a nation, being or not a soveraign state".
7) Considering that therefore, Catalonia can be considered as a country without being an independent sovereign state.
8) Considering Pirates of Catalonia is restricted to a defined area in the territory of the sovereign state of Spain.
9) Considering Section III, paragraph 4 of the Pirate Parties International Statutes states that the General Assembly can grant, at its own discretion, the status of Ordinary Member or the status of Observer Member.
10) Considering that therefore, the acceptance of Pirate Party of Catalonia as an Ordinary Member while Pirate Party of Spain is already one does not breach the Pirate Parties International statutes.
11) Considering that therefore, Pirates of Catalonia and the Pirate Party of Spain can be considered to represent two different countries.
12) Considering that therefore, acceptance of Pirates of Catalonia does not affect the status of Ordinary Member of Pirate Party of Spain.
S T A T E S
Article 1) The acceptance of Pirates of Catalonia as an Ordinary Member of Pirate Parties International does not breach Section III, Section IV paragraph 2 and Section VI paragraph 1 of the statutes.
Article 2) The acceptance of Pirates of Catalonia as an Ordinary Member of Pirate Parties International does not affect the status of Ordinary member of Pirate Party of Spain.
Article 3) The current decision will be published on the Pirate Parties International website.
Deliberated by the Pirate Party International Court of Arbitration on May 15th, 2012, attended by the following: Marco Ciurcina, Arturo Martínez, Mozart Olbrycht-Palmer, and Maxime Rouquet.
Maxime Rouquet : Considering the initial meaning of the statutes was to prevent multiple Ordinary Members in a given state, and encouraging the cooperation inside a Federation (in article VI of the statutes), I think we should not have accepted Pirate Party of Catalonia as an Ordinary Member without having changed and clarified what exactly we meant by the word "country", and made it sure Pirate Party of Catalonia and Pirate Party of Spain cannot work together inside a federation.
As the intention of the Statutes with regard to the use of the term "country" was unclear, and bearing in mind that the General Assembly voted in favour of admitting Pirates of Catalonia as an ordinary member (with no objections raised at the time), the Court of Arbitration suggests that this matter be raised by concerned parties at the next General Assembly with respect to a more adequate definition within the Statutes of the term "country" and possible adoption of rules to regulate situations of coexistence of multiple Pirate Parties within a single sovereign state and/or within a single international organization in which elections take place (like in the European Union).