VKS – News from Valkyria


The VKS (Valkyrian: Valkyrisk kringkastingsselskap), known in Austral as the Valkyrian Broadcasting Corporation, is the national broadcaster of the Valkyrian Republic. Before September 2022, the VKS was known as the KTN. The VKS is owned by the Valkyrian government but retains constitutional editorial independence.

Predecessor newsfeed: KTN Breaking News (archived link)


Government passes gender and sexual rights law

Gender and Sexual Identity Rights Act 2022 will protect rights of rainbow Valkyrians
Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Tuesday, 13 September 2022
Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The Storting passed the Gender and Sexual Identity Rights Act 2022 on Tuesday, a historic law that marks the first time a Valkyrian legislature passed legislation expanding rainbow rights. Previously, such rights only came after a referendum, with repeated criticism from human rights activists that people’s rights should not be at the mercy of direct democracy.

The legislation reiterates existing rights and freedoms, such as same‑sex marriage and polyamory. It also enumerates transgender rights that had only been mentioned in the Valkyrian constitution without any statutory enforcement. As such, transgender people will now have the right to receive gender‑affirming treatment from the National Health Service and gain protection against hate crimes and other forms of discrimination.

The National Police will now have a hate crimes division to investigate acts of hate speech and violence against anyone potentially targeted due to their gender or sexual identity. Until now, the National Police did not have a specialised division for hate crimes. The new division will also investigate similar crimes committed against other protected groups in Valkyria.

Furthermore, the new law requires the Immigration Service to expedite the applications of rainbow individuals in states where their gender or sexual identity puts them at risk. Under previous law, sexual identity was the only protected migrant group. Additionally, the legislation prohibits Valkyria from giving international aid to states with discriminatory policies and diverts such assistance to states that protect against discrimination.

Official pride flags

The human rights law includes some symbolic acts as well, such as recognising five different pride flags as official variants of the Valkyrian flag and several awareness periods throughout the year. During these periods, students will receive education on the history of gender and sexual identity, discrimination, human rights movements, and prominent figures.

During the third reading of the bill, Prime Minister Steve Bennett said the legislation was “long overdue” and would ensure the rights and freedoms of a historically oppressed community in Valkyria. The bill faced staunch resistance from the right-wing opposition and religious organisations. Nicole Chancellor, the leader of The New Right, called the bill an “affront to the natural state of things and Valkyrian tradition”.

The Gender and Sexual Identity Rights Act 2022 passed in a 376–229 vote, with the governing Alliance of Social Democrats overwhelmingly voting in favour alongside a few liberals and communists and nearly every member of the New Conservative Coalition voting against the bill. Jarlskona Kate Murphy signed the legislation within an hour of its passage in the Storting, a noticeable change from her promulgation of legislation during the Conservative government, which often occurred at the last minute.

In other news…

  • Valkyrian withdrawal from Hystaiga nearing completion
  • Investigation underway of alleged cults in Valkyrian north
  • World leader criticised for partying like a normal person


Valkyria completes withdrawal from Hystaiga

Peace talks continue between Hystaiga and Valkyria
Michael Karlsson (he/him), International writer
Thursday, 22 September 2022
Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — Valkyrian Prime Minister Steve Bennett announced on Thursday the completion of Valkyria’s withdrawal from Hystaiga, marking the effective end of the Kalkara War. The conflict began in November 2019 after then‑Prime Minister Stella Kaufman accused Hystaiga of shooting down a Valkyrian fighter jet mid‑October and complicity in a June 2019 chemical attack on a Ravneby nightclub.

While the National Police conducted investigations into the two incidents, the agency could not affirmatively conclude that Hystaiga was responsible for shooting down the fighter jet and attacking the nightclub and only said that Hystaiga could “plausibly have played a role” in the incidents. Nevertheless, the Storting declared war on 5 November, sparking international criticism by not letting the investigations run their course or first seeking dispute resolution with Hystaiga.

Bennett, who had only been the Socialist opposition leader at the time, opposed the Kalkara War from the beginning of the conflict. Due to his opposition to the war, Bennett was viewed unfavourably by 72% of Valkyrians in a March 2020 poll conducted by the KTN, making him the most unpopular party leader at the time, followed by The New Right leader Nicole Chancellor at 63% disapproval.

After successive military failures, rising deaths, and the death of Lucilla Steffánsdóttir Bennett, public opinion turned against the Conservative government and in favour of the Socialist leader, culminating in the largest protest in Valkyrian history in May 2021. Despite the protest, the governing New Conservative Coalition held firm on continuing the Kalkara War, with Kaufman arguing that a surge of troops from the military reserve would ensure eventual victory in the conflict.

However, the surge resulted in marginal gains on the battlefield without the Valkyrian Defence Force making any gains in cities that were characterised as Hystaigan strongholds that were regained by the Hystaigan resistance. While the Valkyrian military held on to Karelia, the Hystaigan capital, for nearly a year between April 2020 and April 2021, it could never regain control over the city, even through the mid‑year surge.

The Hystaigans’ ability to regain and hold on to Karelia provided the Hystaigan political and military leadership a firm base of operations and allowed resistance cells in other Hystaigan cities to weaken Valkyrian control before the Hystaigan military advanced on the occupied cities. To avoid potential encirclement in some cities, the Valkyrian military opted to withdraw, including in Dystalia in September 2021, where nearly 50,000 soldiers were said by several unnamed sources to have been surrounded for three hours before the Valkyrian military established control of an “escape corridor”.

Having won the general election in July 2022, Bennett announced that Valkyria would begin withdrawing troops from Hystaiga and end the Kalkara War, negotiating an armistice with Hystaigan Supreme Voice Blisse Starke in August to ensure a ceasefire during the withdrawal period. The agreement required the withdrawal to be complete by 1 October, during which the ceasefire would expire if Valkyria did not complete its withdrawal by then.

Despite having an armistice in place, the two states are still negotiating a final peace treaty. On 23 October, Hystaiga and Valkyria will conduct twin constitutional referendums to ask their respective populations whether future declarations of war must have authorisation from the World Forum. Other topics discussed during negotiations were reparations and having an independent investigation conducted by the World Forum, but these issues will remain unresolved until after the referendums are voted upon.

In other news…

  • Valkyria considering designation of Hazelian separatist group as terrorists
  • Opinion: Valkyria should be a counterweight to Huawan in geopolitics
  • Shrine dedicated to the valkyries opens in Sjávarborg


Transcript: Bennett speech on Ryccian invasion

"I am calling for a global coalition to isolate Ryccia"

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Valkyrian Prime Minister Steve Bennett:

My fellow Valkyrians, in these past few days, I held three meetings: an intra-party discussion within the Socialist Party, a government parties discussion between Alliance leaders, and an all-party discussion between parliamentary leaders. In these talks, we agreed that Cordilia faces a threat – a fundamental threat – to peace, freedom, and democracy that must be confronted. Once again, the stability of this region has been undermined by Ryccia, a rogue state ruled by tyrants.

After three years of unjust war and struggle, we are a nation weary of war. However, we cannot idly stand by and watch the devastation we all saw in Doge Land and continue to see – the disgusting atrocities we saw committed by Ryccia against the forces of our Peonic neighbour in their illegal use of chemical weapons. It is clear that Ryccia is a nation ruled by war criminals who deserve nothing less than imprisonment for their crimes.

It is true that Valkyria is a nation tired of war, but we are as much a nation tired of injustice. As such, I am calling for a global coalition to isolate Ryccia economically, geographically, and politically and a World Forum resolution authorising international military action against Ryccian military forces operating beyond the Ryccian border. We must punish Ryccia for their egregious conduct – from their violation of national sovereignty to their use of illegal weapons.

As it stands, the Valkyrian Republic maintains longstanding sanctions against the Ryccian military regime in place for past transgressions against the rules and norms of international civil society. In the past, we sanctioned the military leadership of Ryccia, but we have now extended financial sanctions against all current Ryccian government officials, barring them from further access to Valkyrian bank accounts and the Pacifinext stock exchange.

Furthermore, we will sanction any state that aids or abets the Ryccian regime in this illegal and unjust invasion and use of banned weapons. The sanctions imposed on these states will be the same as the sanctions placed on Ryccia and will remain in place until we can determine that they are no longer assisting Ryccia in their illegal conduct.

This government will introduce legislation barring anyone from having both Ryccian and Valkyrian citizenship. Anyone who holds citizenship in both nations will have to decide which to retain. If a person were to retain Ryccian citizenship and renounce Valkyrian citizenship, they will have a specified deadline to leave this nation or face deportation by the Immigration Service.

However, we will continue to host all Ryccian refugees within Valkyria’s borders and welcome more as they come. All Ryccians requesting asylum will be treated in accordance with national and international law and shall receive due diligence in the processing of their requests for asylum. This also applies to all of Doge Land’s civilians seeking refuge from this unjust and unlawful war.

Valkyria is a nation that stands for peace, freedom, and democracy for all people, and it is for this reason that we will provide humanitarian aid to Doge Land and, following authorisation from the World Forum, open our railways as needed to the transport of Peonic troops, weapons, vehicles, and equipment through Valkyria and into the north toward Doge Land. Let it be known that we are actively considering further action to counter the Ryccian regime.


Valkyria will export missile defence systems to Cordilian states

The move is a historic reversal of longstanding defence policy
Daniel Mikkelsen (he/him), Deputy politics writer
Wednesday, 19 October 2022

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — Valkyria will begin exporting missile defence systems to Cordilian states, Prime Minister Steve Bennett told the Storting on Wednesday. The decision marks a historic change to the longstanding Valkyrian policy on military exports, which had long been restricted as part of an effort to prevent the nation’s rivals from discovering the capabilities of Valkyrian weapons and other military technology.

However, the reversal is also out‑of‑character for Bennett, who emerged as a voice against violence during the Kalkara War. Defending his decision, Bennett argued that Valkyria will only export defensive or passive military technology that cannot be used for offensive purposes. By extension, the announcement ruled out the donation of Valkyrian small arms to states invaded by Ryccia, which had been a subject of debate within Valkyria.

Nonetheless, Bennett also stated that states receiving missile defence systems from Valkyria will undergo a “stringent review” by the Intelligence Directorate-General (Generaldirektoratet for Etterretning, GDE) to determine whether the states in question meet a set of criteria that ensures adequate arms control and limits on exportation. According to the prime minister, the GDE review should last no less than six months.

The policy change will not affect Huawan, which is set to receive 50 Týr air defence systems unconditionally from the Valkyrian government. Huawan will be exempt from the new export policy regime due to the “unique relationship” between the two neighbouring nations and the longstanding trust built between them.

In other news…

  • Hystaigan, Valkyrian war limitation referendums likely to pass, polls show
  • Former President Victor Cutter calls Ryccian junta "suicidal dumbfucks"
  • Switch streamer's abusive husband should be imprisoned, home secretary says


Hystaiga, Valkyria pass twin referendums limiting war powers

The World Forum will have the final say on their ability to declare war
Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Thursday, 27 October 2022

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The Valkyrian Electoral Commission announced the passage of Special Referendum 1 on Thursday following Sunday’s vote, amending the national constitution to limit the Valkyrian government’s ability to declare war. The announcement came after Hystaiga’s election authority confirmed the passage of their twin referendum on Wednesday. From now on, the two Cordilian states will need authorisation from the World Forum on any offensive declaration of war.

Valkyrian constitutional amendment:

Hystaigan constitutional amendment:

As a result of the two states passing the twin referendums, Hystaiga and Valkyria will be able to open a new chapter in their ongoing peace talks that may prove to be the most difficult phase. Hystaiga has been adamant in discussing reparations after the 23 October vote, an issue that divided Valkyrians in a recent VKS poll, with 43 per cent saying that Valkyria should pay nothing in reparations versus 40 per cent saying otherwise.

The Valkyrian government has said little about whether they will agree to pay reparations to Hystaiga. During the 19 October Questioning session in the Storting, The New Right leader Nicole Chancellor asked for the government’s position on reparations, resulting in Prime Minister Steve Bennett responding that “we will have to wait and see”. The issue of reparations will represent Bennett’s biggest challenge yet during his premiership, tackling an issue that will affect both Hystaiga and Valkyria for at least a generation.

In other news…

  • Transition to green energy will accelerate, Valkyrian energy minister says
  • Government reveals effort to build continental rail system in Cordilia
  • Inside the 'Restore the Ryderverse' movement


Valkyrian government proposes abolition of rent

The move will significantly curtail private property ownership in Valkyria
Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Monday, 14 November 2022

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The Valkyrian government will abolish landlordism, Prime Minister Steve Bennett said in a speech from the Utøvende on Monday. Following months of interparty negotiations, the governing Alliance of Social Democrats have agreed to specific legislation that will abolish rental housing ownership in Valkyria.

Entitled the Housing Act 2022, the legislation will authorise the national government to expropriate all private property in Valkyria that is either actively being used as rental housing or has been used for that purpose at any time since 2019. The bill also sets a timeline to ban all rental housing by 2026.

The move to nationalise housing in Valkyria has been a long-term goal of the Socialist Party, which gained piecemeal reforms from former Prime Minister Margaret Harrison, whose homelessness legislation came with significant backing from leftists in the Alliance. With the proposed Housing Act, Bennett says homelessness will become nonexistent by the decade’s end in Valkyria.

The Alliance, a bloc of democratic socialists, social democrats, pirates, and green leftists, reached an agreement in principle in July to nationalise housing but its implementation was a matter of debate for months, culminating in a November breakthrough that will see the Socialists achieving total victory on the issue. Following fierce protests against landlands in Ravneby, Gullkysten, and other Valkyrian cities, rent could be a thing of the past.

Under the terms of the Housing Act, the national government will raise taxes to expropriate private housing, maintain the properties, and end monthly rent payments for all tenants as late as January 2026. By then, no person in Valkyria will be legally allowed to rent out property to another person. The legislation will also indefinitely extend an eviction moratorium that was implemented during the GID-20 pandemic.

Anyone in Valkyria who is currently or in danger of becoming homeless will be able to register at a housing office or online for a home within 50 kilometres of their place of usual habitation. The bill will also allocate funding for additional social workers to visit homeless people and help them find shelter.

Monday’s announcement by the prime minister was met with vociferous criticism from the New Conservative Coalition, the Liberal Party, and Valkyrian business leaders, with Liberal leader Jason Sullivan calling the proposed legislation the “death of capitalism” in Valkyria. Some Coalition politicians, such as New Right leader Nicole Chancellor, took to Stream to compare the leftist government to Bruuma.

Political observer Ryan Danielson told the VKS that the Housing Act will be the Valkyrian government’s biggest challenge yet on an issue that has “animated” the conservative and liberal opposition, “For a bill like this, which is the most socialist bill to have ever stood any real chance of passing, we will see how far left this government will be able to go in a historically conservative nation such as ours.”

However, University of Ravneby politics professor Njála Sigurdsdóttir says that Valkyria has been undergoing a left-wing shift in political balance dating back to Patrick Beckley’s presidency in the early 2000s, “The Valkyrian people are reacting to what they see as the excesses of capitalism – inequality, homelessness, and an increasingly out of reach cost of living. This change has been happening for a long time, and we’re finally seeing it come to a head.”

Financial markets reacted negatively to Bennett’s announcement, with the real estate industry facing the biggest blows. Pacifinext was down 4.86% at closing, but housing companies on the index were down a staggering 29.57% on average. Despite the negative financial reaction, Bennett is expected to move forward with the proposed law, as he has long called the stock market an “unacceptable gauge” of political support.

In other news…

  • Valkyrians increasingly dissatisfied with League of Cordilia, poll shows
  • Investigation underway on alleged cults in Valkyrian north
  • Conservative leader holds on despite intraparty feuds

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Bennett defends controversial housing bill

Valkyrian prime minister under fire after unveiling nationalisation plan

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Tuesday, 15 November 2022

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — Just a day after announcing the Housing Act 2022, a bill that would nationalise rented private property in Valkyria, the Valkyrian prime minister took to the floor of the Storting to defend what he called “distortions and misinformation” about the legislation.

The Monday announcement drew criticism from conservative and liberal politicians, businesspeople, financial markets, and foreign leaders who issued varying statements of concern and trepidation. From comparisons to Bruuma to concerns about fair compensation, the Valkyrian government’s proposed housing bill drew a global reaction that reportedly caught the government by surprise, according to sources associated with the Alliance of Social Democrats.

Prime Minister Steve Bennett said it was “disingenuous” for opposition politicians and foreign leaders to draw comparisons between the proposed legislation and the Bruuma, “Valkyria is a multiparty democracy while they are a dictatorship.” The Socialist leader also stated that the government was democratically elected in July to carry out the agenda that led to the Housing Act.

The Valkyrian prime minister also accused his critics of hypocrisy, “The opposition repeatedly talk about the homelessness crisis, yet they often stand for policies that will worsen that same crisis.” Bennett claimed that the Housing Act would implement the constitutionally-protected right to housing by ensuring “every person in our nation will have a roof to sleep under”.

Despite his defence of the proposed housing bill, Bennett did not state whether landlords would receive fair compensation. Following a question posed to him by Opposition Leader Stella Kaufman on the matter, the prime minister only said, “They will be compensated.”

Following the chorus of criticism against the proposed legislation, the Valkyrian Renters Association and the Valkyrian Workers Union came out in favour of the Housing Act, calling the legislation “a necessary bill to solve the homelessness crisis amid a skyrocketing cost of living”.

Meanwhile, protests both in favour and against the proposed legislation have begun in Ravneby, signalling the start of a possibly long and arduous debate.

In other news…

  • Peace talks continue between Hystaiga and Valkyria
  • Economists increasingly worried about potential stagflation crisis
  • Breastfeeding mother harassed in viral video


Valkyria may have to choose between expropriation and reparations

Government budget analysis says Valkyria cannot do both without major tax raises

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Tuesday, 3 January 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The Valkyrian government stands between a rock and a hard place after the Statistics Agency published its analysis of the proposed Kalkara War reparations package and the housing expropriation bill. According to the independent government research agency, the government will not be able to fund both proposals without dramatically raising taxes at all income levels, cutting spending on other programmes, or a combination of the two.

For Bennett and his Socialist Party, abolishing rent and reaching a peace agreement with Hystaiga were both central to their winning campaign in July, but the analysis provided on expropriation and reparations, two aspects of both issues, has the government in a bind on funding and keeping their promises.

Emilie Jenssen, a politics professor at the University of Ravneby, said that the Socialists “promised too much in too little time”. Jenssen called the current situation the Socialists find themselves in as predictable, “They were bound to hit a brick wall with their sweeping agenda, but now reality has set in, and they will now have to upset either the housing or peace activists in their coalition.”

Reacting to the analysis, the Valkyrian Renters Association stated that the government can afford to expropriate the housing industry and pay reparations to Hystaiga simultaneously, “This is a false dilemma when the government is fully capable of accomplishing both tasks.” The Valkyrian Workers Union made a similar statement, writing that the government can find the funding to expropriate and pay reparations.

Opposition leader Stella Kaufman wrote on Stream that the government is “threatening to bankrupt the nation with programmes that are impossible to fund”. Kaufman, the former prime minister, called the expropriation plan an “example of communist theft” and rebuked the reparations promised to Hystaiga by asking, “Where are the reparations for the people they killed on Valkyrian land?”

After having seen the Statistics Agency report, several officials associated with the Socialist Party have told the VKS that the government may push back the timeline that the Housing Act 2023 outlines. According to the current proposal, the government would have to nationalise the entire private housing industry by 2026, but officials have said that the timeline may be set back at least a decade – 2036 – or more to prioritise reparations to Hystaiga.

When asked if the government may renege on the reparations promised to Hystaiga, the officials said that was a nonstarter because Bennett allegedly made the promise directly to Supreme Voice Blisse Starke and that he believes that peace with Hystaiga takes precedence over expropriating housing. So far, no one in the government has been willing to speak publicly on the Statistics Agency report.

In other news…

  • Disappearances at all-time high in northern Valkyria, government report
  • Billionaire offers to buy Stream, take company private
  • Dissent rising within New Conservative Coalition


Parliamentary committee blocks bill to overturn proselytization ban

Populist Left joins conservatives and communists to keep ban

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Tuesday, 28 February 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The Valkyrian parliamentary human rights committee voted 13–12 with one abstention to suspend work on drafting a bill that would have repealed a Kaufman-era ban on proselytism, the attempt at converting a person to another religion. In the vote, the three members representing the Populist Left joined the New Conservative Coalition and the Communist Party to prevent its advancement to the third reading.

The Populist Left as a party represents left-wing voters who are more likely to have agnostic or atheistic beliefs and support a general ban on proselytism as opposed to the conservatives who are more likely supportive of policies that protect the Valrissi religion, which is the ban’s apparent goal based on past statements from members of The New Right and the Northern Party.

The ban on proselytism originates from the Immigration Regulatory Act 2019 (IRA 19), which had initially been a ban on such actions by noncitizens. However, a full ban was imposed after the passage of the Valkyrian Culture Act 2021 (VCA 21). In both instances, the ban was sent to the Constitutional Court for review by Jarlskona Kate Murphy.

When the Constitutional Court ruled on IRA 19, it determined that it was unconstitutional to prevent noncitizens from adhering to their religions but also stated that the Valkyrian parliament can restrict people from proselytizing, giving way to VCA 21, which implemented a total ban on the act. With the latter bill, the Constitutional Court reiterated the legality of the ban, allowing the law to enter into effect.

The issue of proselytism has been divisive in Valkyria, with a majority of Valrissi adherents supporting a ban to prevent what they say is an encroachment on the national religion and culture. Human rights organisations and adherents of other religions say that the ban is a violation of a person’s fundamental rights. A December 2022 poll conducted by the VKS shows that the Valkyrian people are evenly divided on the ban.

In other news…

  • Government to make final decision on expropriation and reparations
  • This growing Valkyrian company is wholly owned by its workers
  • Merida man falls into baler, dies


Valkyrian government unveils expropriation and reparations plans

Valkyria to nationalise housing under compromise plan and pay reparations at vastly less than expected amount

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Tuesday, 7 March 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The Valkyrian government released its plans on expropriation and reparations on Tuesday, ending months of speculation and setting up what could become a heated debate in the Storting and among the public.

In a two-part speech from the Utøvende, Prime Minister Steve Bennett first announced the government’s final draft on housing expropriation, a proposal that will see rental housing all but disappear throughout Valkyria if the bill passes. Under the premise of abolishing rent, the recently-elected socialist government has spent four months soliciting public input and refining the legislation to follow through on a campaign promise Bennett made in the 2022 general election.

In the final draft of the Housing Act 2023, the government will ban rental housing on 1 January 2030, four years later compared to the original proposal, which proposed a ban starting by 2026. If passed the eviction moratorium imposed at the start of the GID-20 pandemic will be extended to the same day by which rental housing will be banned, essentially imposing a permanent ban on evictions.

When the bill was first announced in November, it was met with criticism from conservatives and liberals, some of whom called the legislation a death blow to the free market in Valkyria. However, the Housing Act gained a boost in popularity when former Prime Minister Margaret Harrison announced her support for the bill. Despite losing the 2019 election, Harrison remained a popular politician among Valkyrians, allowing her to remain an impactful voice in Ravneby politics and give Bennett a hand in pushing the legislation.

Recent polling conducted by the VKS shows that 54 per cent of Valkyrians support the government’s proposed expropriation, but international reactions to the bill have been divided by celebration and apprehension. Leaders from the Pelinese and Stoinian governments responded to the proposal by suggesting that the Housing Act is a slippery slope toward authoritarianism. However, the legislation received support from Frost President Revan Kensei, who said that the government was “taking the first definitive steps to [end] a parasitic practice that harms countless people”.

After discussing the expropriation plan, Bennett turned to the peace talks with Hystaiga, announcing that the government had provisionally agreed to pay 200 billion vekter to Hystaiga in four annual instalments adjusted for inflation in each payment after the first. The amount agreed to is vastly less than what was expected when it was reported in late November that the government had agreed to pay 2.1 trillion vekter, more than 10 times the amount announced by Bennett on Tuesday.

When the initial reports of 2.1 trillion vekter being agreed to in reparations came out, the news disrupted the peace talks between Hystaiga and Valkyria with thousands of Valkyrians protesting against paying the reparations. Opposition politicians such as Conservative leader Stella Kaufman accused the government of bankrupting the country and robbing a generation of national wealth.

However, Bennett’s 200 billion vekt announcement came as a relief to the financial markets, with Pacifinext rising 2.5 per cent at closing. The discrepancy between the reported and actual amount to be paid in reparations came as a surprise to many financial observers, so much so that The Gullkysten Post, the news organisation which had initially reported the 2.1 trillion amount, had to issue a retraction and apologize.

Despite the lower amount, the conservative opposition remained adamant about paying a single vekt in reparations. Kaufman, who had been the prime minister who initiated the Kalkara War, remains defiant that Valkyria had been the victim of Hystaigan aggression and should not pay any reparations to Hystaiga. New Right leader Nicole Chancellor called the reparations an “act of acquiescence to a terrorist state”.

The Storting is planning on holding final votes on both expropriation and reparations as early as 13 March.

In other news…

  • Bradley Murphy names Victor Cutter co-leader of the Centrist Democratic Party
  • Valkyrians preparing festivals nationwide and internationally for Sigrblót
  • Fly-Man and the Bee exceeds expectations at the box office


Valkyria passes bill to nationalise housing by 2030

Government presses forward despite international concerns

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Friday, 24 March 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — In a bid to end homelessness and fight a cost of living crisis, the Valkyrian government voted Friday to pass the Housing Act 2023, a bill that will make permanent the eviction moratorium imposed at the start of the GID-20 pandemic and effectively ban rental housing by 2030. By then, the Valkyrian government will be expected to provide shelter for the nearly 73 million people projected to be living in Valkyria in 2030.

Being the government’s first major law on housing since the Shelter Act 2017, a Margaret Harrison-era boost in public housing funding, the bill’s passage represents Prime Minister Steve Bennett’s first major legislative act since taking control of the executive branch in July 2022 and a rebuke to liberals, conservatives, and international critics who see the legislation as a threat to capitalism and liberty in Valkyria.

Like many other countries in Pacifica, Valkyria is confronting an increasingly challenging cost of living crisis that has worsened homelessness, income inequality, and mental health. The crisis was the second-most important issue to Valkyrians when they voted in June 2022, second only to the Kalkara War. In a mid-March poll conducted by the VKS, 56 per cent of Valkyrians said they supported the government’s plan to expropriate housing.

In a speech on the floor of the Storting, Bennett praised the bill’s passage, calling it a “revolutionary” solution to homelessness and the cost of living crisis. The prime minister also took aim at other world leaders who criticised the Housing Act, stating that “Pacifica needs leaders who are willing to do what’s necessary to protect the working class, and that is what we did here in Valkyria with this bill”.

Centrist Democratic leader Bradley Murphy took on the role as the leading Coalition speaker against the Housing Act, calling it the “beginning of the end of free enterprise” in Valkyria and a “tragic development” for the Central Cordilian nation. Murphy further expressed fear that foreign investors may withdraw from Valkyria, stymieing development and Valkyrian economic power.

In the years leading up to 2030, the Valkyrian government will steadily acquire any private land used for rental housing until it gains total ownership by the 2030 deadline. From this point forward, anyone without a home will be provided one at no cost other than a tax hypothecated for upkeep.

Despite the nationalisation, not all housing will be expropriated, particularly any home that is owned but not rented out. Homeowners will retain ownership of their property, and the national government will establish a means for any state-owned home to be bought by any person for the purpose of permanent residence. However, no landowner in Valkyria will be allowed to rent out a home to another.

In other news…

  • Vote expected on Kalkara War reparations
  • Sigrblót 2023: Sacrifices and grand feasts are coming
  • Opinion: Valkyria is becoming a modern socialist experiment


Government preparing festivals for Sigrblót

Festivities to begin on 6 April, the fourth full moon after solstice

Torhild Jóhannsdóttir (she/her), Culture writer
Saturday, 25 March 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — For three days in April, the Valrissi will celebrate Sigrblót and honour Óðinn and the gods with sacrifices and feasts. So too will the Valkyrian state, which maintains Valrissi as the state religion. Throughout Valkyria and in Valrissi communities around the world, 6 April will mark the first day of festivities as the fourth full moon after solstice.

Jarlskona Kate Murphy is expected to give a speech at Ravneby Stadium, where she will likely make a sacrifice and light a bonfire. The jarlskona will also be joined by Prime Minister Steve Bennett and Chieftain Haakon Danielson, who will both give speeches as well. The Valkyrian government also invited other world leaders and believers in other faiths to come to Valkyria to join in the festivities.

With the heads of state and government joining the chieftain to observe Sigrblót, their involvement shows just how resurgent and influential the Valrissi religion has been in recent years after decades of secularism. Initially driven by the far-right in the late 2010s, left-wing politicians such as Bennett and Murphy have led efforts to reclaim the Valrissi religion from the extremists, promoting an inclusive alternative to its zealous and dogmatic counterpart.

Despite their efforts to promote inclusion, there’s a tinge of irony given that one party in Bennett’s government, the Populist Left, recently voted against overturning the proselytization ban, a reflection of agnostic and atheistic values among their voters. The stalled attempt at reversing the ban conversely resulted in a victory for the Valrissi fundamentalists and their more extreme view of the religion.

Furthermore, the fundamentalists will also celebrate Sigrblót with festivities independent of the government. While Valrissi modernists like Bennett are more likely to offer mead as their sacrifice, the fundamentalists strictly follow the religious tradition as the ancestors did, which includes making live animal sacrifices. In the past, the government cracked down on this practice, but the Kaufman government did not stop them at the behest of one of its Coalition partners, The New Right, whose voters are primarily fundamentalists.

While Valkyria maintains a law on the ethical slaughter of animals, the Bennett government did not prosecute anyone for animal sacrifice during either Vetrnætr or Yule, during which there have been documented cases of such sacrifices being made throughout Valkyria, particularly in the north, where fundamentalism is prevalent. Sigrblót will likely be another focal point in the give and take between Valrissi modernism and fundamentalism.

In other news…

  • Centrist Democratic Party to enter "strategic reevaluation phase"
  • Home secretary may deploy gendarmerie in northern Valkyria
  • Former general says that Pacifica is not real, controlled by others


Centrist Democrats withdraw from New Conservative Coalition

The move comes after Victor Cutter’s appointment as co-leader of the party

Ragnvald Sigurdsson (he/him), Deputy politics writer
Tuesday, 27 March 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Centrist Democratic co-leader Victor Cutter

Ravneby — Not too long after party officials declared a “strategic reevaluation phase”, the Centrist Democratic Party announced on Monday that it formally withdrew from the New Conservative Coalition, a party bloc that included the Conservative Party, The New Right, and the Northern Party. In a joint statement, Centrist Democratic co-leaders Bradley Murphy and Victor Cutter cited “growing extremism” as their reason for breaking with the Coalition.

Positioned among the centre-right in Valkyrian politics, the Centrist Democratic Party was founded in 2016 during a bitter internal dispute between multiple factions in the United Conservative Party. The 2016 dispute led to the party splitting in three, giving way to a Conservative Party led by Giovanni Giletti, The New Right led by Nicole Chancellor, and a Centrist Democratic Party co-founded by centrist politicians that saw the Conservative Party as “irreversibly broken”, as Victor Cutter had stated when he joined the party in 2016.

Leading up to the 2019 general election, Conservative leader Stella Kaufman reached an agreement with Chancellor and her New Right to reform the old United Conservative Party as a bloc known as the New Conservative Coalition. Almost immediately, the agreement was called a “devil’s bargain” by the left and independent right, signalling Kaufman’s willingness to compromise with the far right.

It had been reported at the time that many Centrist Democratic officials were furious about the deal, with some party officials telling the news media that Cutter called the agreement the Conservatives’ “death knell to the fascists”. However, when the 2019 general election unfolded and gave the Centrist Democratic Party the opportunity to be part of a government led either by Labour or the Conservatives, party leader Bradley Murphy made the decision to join the New Conservative Coalition, putting an end to Margaret Harrison’s left-wing government and giving way to a Valkyria led by the right.

Bradley Murphy in 2018

Murphy’s choice was a controversial one, almost prompting a split in the Centrist Democratic Party. Some within the party adamantly objected to any alliance with The New Right. However, there were those in the party who were just as uncomfortable participating in a government that included the Socialist Party, which would have been the case if the party went with Harrison. The split came at a critical time when the Centrist Democratic Party was seen as the queenmaker between Harrison and Kaufman.

For his part, Murphy was able to quell the internal opposition with promises of being a moderating force in the Coalition. However, as time went on, the Coalition government that the Centrist Democrats were part of led Valkyria into the Kalkara War and ended the Harrison-era investigation into alleged Valrissi fundamentalist cults in the nation’s northern reaches that had been accused of committing forced conversions, torture, and murder.

In the time since losing the 2022 general election, both the Conservatives and Centrist Democrats have spent time undergoing internal reflections. In both parties, there have been rumblings of dissent against Kaufman and Murphy for making an alliance with Chancellor, purportedly led by Conservative Jonathan Victor and Centrist Democrat Victor Cutter, both of whom once held the title of president of Qvait and have long blamed Chancellor for the collapse of the Valkyrian centre-right.

Cutter, who had once served as the president of Qvait and later as a Cabinet official in successive governments, had been long seen as a centrist politician willing to work with any party from the centre-left to the centre-right, going so far as to serve as Harrison’s intelligence secretary before the unification of Austurland and Qvait led to a major restructuring of the new unified government. Since then, Cutter served as a Centrist Democratic backbencher, often taking a greater interest in handling local issues affecting his constituency than responding to the national issues of the day.

Until 7 March 2023, when Murphy announced Cutter’s appointment as co-leader of the Centrist Democratic Party, a title that was affirmed by the party membership on 24 March. With Cutter now co-leading the party, the Centrist Democrats broke with the Coalition and promised to work with any centrist party moving forward. As a parting jab at Chancellor and her party, the two co-leaders called for “a new new right” in Valkyria.

With the Centrist Democrats breaking ranks, the Conservative Party may soon follow suit. For months, it has been reported that heated arguments have been held between party officials, with threats made to challenge Kaufman for the Conservative leadership after the party’s collapse in the 2022 election. As one Conservative MP told the VKS, the election reopened a six-year-old wound.

In other news…

  • Valkyrian government mum on Relia's ascension in Ryccia
  • National Police annouces arrest warrants for 653 suspected cultists
  • "Pacifica isn't real": former general is institutionalised


Northern Party leader arrested for allegedly leading cult

Marshall is one of 653 charged by the National Police, conservatives outraged

Riikka Ryhänen (she/her), Deputy politics writer
Friday, 31 March 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Northern Party leader Jake Marshall alongside followers of his religious movement, May 2022

Ravneby — The National Police arrested Northern Party leader and Valrissi fundamentalist chieftain Jake Marshall in Ravneby on Friday, accusing the politician of leading a cult in Valkyria’s northern reach. The arrest came after the national government resumed years-old investigations into cults in the region in November 2022.

In February 2018, the then-existing Office of Cultist Movement Investigations (OCMI) within the National Police had an outstanding warrant for Marshall’s arrest. However, Marshall’s election to the Storting in 2019, the right-wing government’s closure of the OCMI and its investigations, and their invalidation of arrest warrants originating from the closed office essentially shielded Marshall from arrest.

Until Tuesday, when Home Secretary Taeler Shaw announced that 653 people across Valkyria would be charged for cultist activities, which included Marshall based on the 2018 arrest warrant and “further findings”. Shaw did not elaborate further on what other findings the National Police made on Marshall, but sources tell the VKS that he could face multiple murder charges.

After Shaw’s announcement, Marshall wrote a post on Stream calling the charges “baseless” and the investigations a “witch hunt”, vowing to fight the charges and asking his supporters to “take to the streets for their rights and freedoms”. When the National Police arrested Marshall, he had just finished an interview with MÉS, a right-wing media outlet. The footage of Marshall’s arrest has now been replayed multiple times on their television channel, with its hosts and commentators decrying the arrest.

Jake Marshall in a northern town, date unknown

In 2018, the Valkyrian government led by Prime Minister Margaret Harrison issued its first-ever warning about cults operating within Valkyria at a widespread rate not seen in the nation’s history. The announcement came after the GDE, Valkyria’s intelligence agency, began tracking suspected cultist movements within Valkyria in March 2017. The investigation into the alleged cults intensified after Harrison was seriously injured in an attempted assassination by a northern-based militia with ties to multiple groups flagged by the OCMI.

A January 2023 government report showed that disappearances in the Valkyrian north were at an all-time high, largely attributing them to the alleged cults operating in the region. The most high-profile disappearances occurred in November 2018, when Police Sergeant Rebecca Hawkins and Officer Craig Lance were reported missing in the northern village of Havredal after they headed out from the nearest police station to execute an arrest warrant on a suspected cultist. As of this writing, Hawkins and Lance remain missing, and no arrest has been made in connection to their disappearances.

With the Valkyrian government under new left-wing leadership, Shaw, who is also the leader of the Populist Left, is spearheading the government’s efforts to rein in the alleged cults and bring order to the Valkyrian north, which has been referred to as the wildlands. Since 2017, the Populist Left has been the most vocal party against cults in Valkyria, calling them a “grave threat” to the nation in their party manifesto. The party performs strongly among left-wing voters in the northern region who have issued various complaints to the Electoral Commission of voter intimidation by Valrissi fundamentalists as early as 2016.

Despite the sense of urgency by left-wing parties, politicians in The New Right were among the first to defend against the claims of cults existing in Valkyria. In April 2017, then-opposition leader Nicole Chancellor called the OCMI “a front to suppress political opponents”, arguing that the rights and freedoms of Valkyrians were being subverted by the government in the vein of fighting cultist movements.

On Friday, Chancellor and her allies were still making the same case. After Marshall’s arrest, The New Right leader accused the government of targeting the political opposition, describing Marshall as a “dissident”. Many Conservatives also defended Marshall, with former Prime Minister Stella Kaufman calling the arrest an “act of tyranny”. Officials in the Northern Party were the most virulent in their words, with deputy leader Dagur Strom warning that the arrest could “fan the flames of disorder”.

Having arrested Marshall, the National Police are holding him at the Ravneby detention centre, awaiting arraignment on Monday.

In other news…

  • Defence secretary rules out Concordia Entente membership
  • Government to publish list of qualified referendums
  • Valkyrian mayor resigns after accusation of sexual misconduct


Government to campaign for drug legalisation throughout Cordilia

Valkyrian cannabis and coca have proven to be lucrative industries since their legalisation

Anders Magnusson (he/him), Business writer
Monday, 22 May 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Cannabis allowed to grow freely in Valkyria

Ravneby — Foreign Minister Avianna Aldridge announced on Monday that the Valkyrian government will discuss drug legalisation with the nation’s neighbours. The announcement came after a yearslong campaign for legalisation within Valkyria that saw recreational cannabis legalised in 2017 and coca in 2018 and the decriminalisation of all drugs in 2021. Since then, cannabis and coca consumption has risen, with 57 per cent of Valkyrians telling the VKS in a March 2023 poll that they have tried cannabis at least once and 43 per cent saying they tried coca.

The trend toward legalisation has been so strong in Valkyria that the previous conservative government virtually abandoned its attempts to recriminalise coca and other drugs in 2021 after the Valkyrian people voted in a referendum to decriminalise all drugs. With the socialists winning the 2022 general election, the new Valkyrian government has proven to be an ally once again to the growing cannabis and coca industries.

Since the legalisation of cannabis in 2017, one company has become a national leader in the industry. Grønn, a worker cooperative headquartered in Gullkysten, operates more cannabis farms and dispensaries in Valkyria than any other company, and the company hopes to expand its operations internationally, according to Grønn president Karianna Westergaard.

Grønn is no stranger to the current Valkyrian government. Prime Minister Steve Bennett has been seen in public inhaling cannabis from a Grønn vaporiser. Agriculture Minister Halla Eiríksdotter met with Westergaard three times in 2022 to discuss national policy. With the national government moving forward with an international campaign to legalise drugs, Grønn may have an opportunity to follow through on its expansion into other countries.

Grønn’s flagship dispensary in Gullkysten

Founded in 2015 as a hemp company, Grønn’s exponential rise and growing influence have been tied to its business practices. As a company seeking legalisation, it saw early supporters from Labour and Green politicians. As a worker cooperative, it gained the support of socialists such as Bennett and Jarlskona Kate Murphy. During the Harrison premiership, Grønn received favourable subsidies from the Valkyrian government to expand its operations, quickly overtaking other cannabis companies that were privately owned or publicly traded.

Even in the present day, Grønn continues to receive government subsidies dedicated to Valkyrian cooperatives, allowing the company to thrive even further. In recent announcements concerning the Valkyrian government’s budget for the upcoming financial year, these subsidies are slated for a five per cent increase, giving the company extra incentives along the way.

Despite the extensive support Grønn has received and the continued trend toward legalisation, liberal and conservative opponents have cried foul, calling the subsidies “economic distortion”. When Stella Kaufman led the Valkyrian government, she threatened multiple times to end the cooperative subsidies, but the Centrist Democrats in her coalition never supported their termination, keeping them in place during the conservative government.

Wild coca growing in a Valkyrian forest

In 2020, Grønn became cross-industrial after an association of coca growers moved to join the cooperative, giving the company broad access to both the cannabis and coca industries. Moreover, the company plans to move into an industry awaiting full legalisation: psilocybin-containing mushrooms. Valkyria has yet to legalise the mushrooms, but they have been de facto legal because most Valkyrians use them for religious purposes.

In October 2022, Bennett said that the Storting will take up psilocybin legalisation, and legislation doing just that is making its way through the legislative body. In March, a group of Green legislators heavily involved in the bill said that legalisation could come as early as June. Compared to most other countries, the pace at which drug liberalisation has been moving in Valkyria has been among the fastest. Some members of parliament, primarily among the Greens and Pirates, have also been pushing for LSD and MDMA legalisation.

Now, with the Valkyrian government mobilising the Foreign Service for an international campaign to end the prohibition on drugs, it has been described as a sea change from the vast restrictions that once existed on these drugs a couple of decades ago. However, not everyone in Valkyria has been supportive of the change. Nicole Chancellor, the Leader of The New Right, said in August 2022 that Valkyria was becoming a “narco-state”.

When Valkyria legalised coca in 2018, the Ryccian government quickly responded by banning coca imports and imposing stricter inspections of Valkyrian exports. The Sedunnic interior minister stated that their government would also increase the inspection of Valkyrian goods. Several members of the conservative opposition, such as Chancellor, warn that further legalisation will harm Valkyrian exports.

Despite the concerns raised by the opposition, Bennett and his government are determined to press on with legalisation. So far, the Valkyrian people have not pushed back against this trend, especially after being given opportunity after opportunity to reverse it.

Furthermore, the Valkyrian medical community has embraced the legalisation trend, prescribing cannabis at record levels for various people, including cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy to counteract the treatment’s side effects, and increasing endorsement of prescribing LSD or psilocybin to treat alcohol addiction and MDMA in psychotherapy for patients with post-traumatic stress.

At the time of writing, the legislation legalising psilocybin awaits its third and final reading while other legislation legalising LSD and MDMA are in their first reading.

In other news…

  • Valkyria moves to entrench trans rights
  • Government to investigate private military firm
  • Ryler Rift releases new album


Valkyria legalises psilocybin in defiance of international criticism

Psilocybin is the third major recreational drug to be legalised since 2017 after cannabis and coca

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Monday, 5 June 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — The storting passed legislation on Monday legalising the recreational use of psilocybin in Valkyria, following through on promises made by Prime Minister Steve Bennett and other socialist and ecologist leaders. The legalisation came at a time when Valkyria faced increasing international criticism of the country’s liberal views on drug use and of the prime minister’s response to the criticism.

Facing criticism from international figures, including within the Izaakian and Ryccian governments, Bennett inhaled from a vaporiser in front of journalists and shot back at a statement made by Izaakian Home Secretary Walter Rombold. On Stream, the prime minister threatened to issue a travel advisory to Wasserstein, Valkyria’s neighbour to the north. Bennett also made an ageist dismissal of criticism from opposition members in the storting.

On Monday, Bennett struck a different tone during the final debate on the legalisation bill, apologising for mishandling international criticism but also defending his government’s position on the issue:

Before passing the psilocybin legalisation bill, Home Secretary Taeler Shaw announced that the National Police would no longer arrest or assist foreign states in extraditing people accused of drug possession or use, which was decriminalised within Valkyria in a 2021 referendum. However, the police will continue to do so in the case of smugglers. Furthermore, the government moved to advance the LSD and MDMA legalisation bills to the second reading, putting the bills one step closer to law.

Speaking on the issue of legalisation, Foreign Secretary Avianna Aldridge stated that the government “remains undeterred” in its quest for international legalisation and the safe and regulated trade of previously illicit drugs. The foreign secretary condemned the continued international prohibition of drugs, “which has proven to be effective insofar as to fostering a black market with a contaminated and dangerous mix of drugs.”

Despite international criticism, the Valkyrian government remains united on the issue, with all parties in the governing Alliance of Social Democrats standing behind legalisation and the prime minister. Public opinion also appears to be on the prime minister’s side, with 65 per cent of Valkyrians supporting the government’s drug policy in a VKS poll conducted in late May.

In other news…

  • Storting considers reducing party voting threshold to 1 per cent
  • Government greatly reducing oil consumption, NGO report states
  • Ravneby nationalises biggest landlord in city


Rental housing in Ravneby comes under local control

Ravneby city government has abolished rental housing following national approval

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Friday, 28 July 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — All rental housing in Ravneby came under local government control following a vote by the city’s legislature on Friday. Led by a governing coalition composed of Socialists, Labour, and Greens, the Ravneby Storting invoked powers granted to local authorities by the recently passed Housing Act 2023 to expropriate rental housing. The city government has vowed steep reductions in monthly payments required from renters before transitioning to a tax regime that will effectively abolish such payments.

Following the March passage of the Housing Act 2023, Ravneby became the first local government in Valkyria to exercise the new expropriatory powers granted to it by the newly enacted law. Daniel Yamamoto, the Valkyrian planning minister, gave the national government’s approval to expropriate rental housing in the city, resulting in millions of Valkyrians instantly becoming public housing tenants, accelerating the national government’s plan to abolish rental housing by 2030.

The decision to expropriate came after a 2021 city referendum calling for such passed with 68 per cent support. Leading up to the expropriation vote by the Ravneby Storting, city tenants assembled outside the legislature, demonstrating in support of the local government following a radio and television ad blitz by a coalition of the city’s landlords calling on the local body to reject the move.

Once the national seat of power of a fascist dictatorship in the 20th century, the Valkyrian capital has since become a hotbed for experimental socialist policies, which has received encouragement from a longtime local resident who now serves as the Valkyrian prime minister, Steve Bennett. The prime minister has given his support to the city’s local government, seeing the capital as the testing grounds for various left-wing policies that could potentially see national implementation.

Ravneby is not the only local government that set its sights on housing expropriation. Local officials in Gullkysten and Tvillingelver have also put forward proposals to expropriate housing within their respective cities, with the proposal in Gullkysten currently under negotiation with local landlords. Despite the Housing Act 2023’s passage, various landlords across Valkyria remain defiant and hope that the law will either be struck down by the courts or repealed in a future government before its full implementation.

The clash that took place in Ravneby between landlords, their tenants, and the local government is a portent of what is to come as a result of housing expropriation. Unlike the negotiations underway in Gullkysten, there were no such negotiations in Ravneby, with the local government unilaterally exercising newfound powers under the Housing Act 2023 to place all rental housing within the city under its control. As a result, the matter of compensation will be decided by the courts.

In other news…

  • Valkyrian Socialist Party urges peaceful education after USSU socialists call for revolution
  • Trial of the century: Northern Party leader faces various charges related to cultism
  • Valkyrian government launches mental health services for trans youth


Valkyrian police discover cultist mass grave in northern reach

“The people responsible for this crime will never see the sun again”

Riikka Ryhänen (she/her), Deputy politics writer
Wednesday, 27 September 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ulvegrend — The chief of the Valkyrian National Police announced the discovery of a mass grave in Ulvegrend on Tuesday, finding the remains of nearly 300 people. Emerging from a recently erected tent near the mass grave site, Chief Susanna Frostevall delivered the news to journalists, describing the scene as “horrific”. The discovery marks the first concrete evidence of atrocities presumably committed by Valrissi cults in Valkyria’s northern reach.

The police chief described some of the bodies as being only weeks old with bullet wounds to various parts of the remains but most notably the back of the head, “Many of these people were executed.” The National Police have yet to identify any of the remains found in the mass grave site, but they have begun comparing them with entries on the national missing persons database.

The mass grave’s discovery has provoked a harsh reaction from the national government and justification for their aggressive campaign against cults, with Prime Minister Steve Bennett stating that “the people responsible for this crime will never see the sun again”. Home Secretary Taeler Shaw announced that the discovery “changed the calculus” of how the government will respond to cultist groups moving forward.

In response to the discovery, Jarlskona Kate Murphy declared a state of emergency for all parts of Valkyria’s northern reach, which was quickly adopted by the storting. As a result of the declaration, the entire military beyond the National Gendarmerie has been mobilised to assist the National Police in restoring order to the northern reach.

In 2022, the national government re-established the Office of Cultist Movement Investigations (Kontor for undersøkelser av kultistbevegelser, KUKB), an anti-cultist police unit that was disestablished during the Kaufman era. However, Shaw stated that the discovery will see the KUKB take on a more proactive role in the northern reach.

National Tactical Intervention Force (Nasjonal Taktisk Intervensjonsstyrke, NTIS) officers

Moving forward, additional resources will be allocated to the KUKB, and all patrol units in the northern reach will report directly to them instead of the ordinary police. These police officers will be part of a new subunit called the Northern Pacification Force (Nordlige Pasifiseringsstyrken, NPS), whose role is described in the name of the new unit. Furthermore, the NPS has been given authorisation directly from the Home Secretary to use weapons and equipment that the National Tactical Intervention Force possesses.

To lower the risk of abduction or even attack, police patrols in the region will always have a minimum of four officers in a unit. That decision stems from the November 2018 disappearance of Police Sergeant Rebecca Hawkins and Constable Craig Lance, who have yet to be found. The military, with its vast resources, will share satellite imagery with the National Police and conduct sweeps through forested areas in the search for additional mass graves or cultist activity.

SIEGE, a controversial quasi-military and intelligence agency founded in 2019 by the Kaufman government, will now focus its resources on the northern reach, assisting the police and military in pacifying the region. Previously, the agency had been heavily involved in the Kalkara war effort, dedicating resources toward capturing or killing high-value targets within the Hystaigan military and resistance.

The grave site’s discovery also comes months after the March 2023 arrest of Northern Party leader Jake Marshall, who has been arrested on the suspicion of leading a Valrissi fundamentalist cult. In an initial court appearance in early April, Marshall pleaded not guilty and now awaits his next court appearance in October.

Since March, the national government undertook a major crackdown on alleged cults operating in the northern reach, with more than a thousand individuals charged with committing cultist activities. However, the revelation of a mass grave has perceptibly emboldened the national government to take further measures against the cults in the northern reach.

In other news…

  • Grønn to open bars, cafés, and nightclubs with cannabis, coca, and psilocybin products
  • Valkyrian government to launch free VPN service for residents and people abroad
  • Valkluft emissions greatly reduced following short-haul flight ban


Party conferences confirm socialist grip on power in Valkyria

Interparty alliance of socialists set to hasten left-wing shift in the central Cordilian nation

Tove Jakobsdóttir (she/her), Chief politics writer
Tuesday, 17 October 2023

Austral | Valkyrisk | Austurmál | Fjellspråk | Läntinen

Ravneby — Every October, Valkyria’s political parties hold conferences. This year, the socialists have effectively won over control of the parties composing the governing Alliance of Social Democrats. Resolutions supported by left-wing activists in each of the parties; the Socialists, Labour, Populist Left, Pirates, and Greens; all passed without much opposition, showing how bold the left are with their newfound power in Valkyria.

Even the Labour Party and Populist Left, historically characterised as a social democratic moderating force to leftist urges, have taken a left-wing turn at the behest of political leaders in their left-wing camps, particularly by Jarlskona Kate Murphy, a Labour politician who has been lockstep in the policies of Prime Minister Steve Bennett, the general secretary of the Socialist Party.

At the Pirate Party Conference in Gullkysten, red flags were seen waving within the sea of black flags. The context was two-fold for the pirates, with the red flag potentially having two meanings: support for socialism and indication of no quarter given. The latter sparked controversy on social media with accusations that the Pirates were supporting political violence. David Mira, the leader of the Pirate Party took to Stream to shoot down those accusations, stating that the red flags symbolised party activists’ support for socialist policies.

Each of the five governing parties passed resolutions indicating support for the Alliance of Social Democrats. All the while the conferences were happening, the parties’ representatives in the storting were finalising legislation that would see the governing bloc upholding the terms of the coalition agreement, chiefly the nationalisation of the defence industry and weakening copyright law.

Valkyrian Metallulver tank in a forest near Ravneby

At the prime minister’s island residence at Eyjabær, the leaders of the five parties held a meeting during the conferences where they discussed and strategised their next moves. By all indications, the government will successfully pass legislation nationalising the defence industry in November with Defence Minister Amalia Rollins, the former general secretary of the Socialist Party, set to assume control over the Valkyrian war machine.

Further nationalisation has been proposed by socialist activists, and there appear to be indications that the government is giving the proposal serious thought. Potential targets for nationalisation that could be put on the table in the near future are banks, pharmacies, supermarkets, and internet service providers. Already, some of the conference resolutions passed by multiple left-wing parties endorsed additional targets for nationalisation.

The Pirates, once cautious in the policies they proposed out of concern for electability, passed a resolution demanding the conversion of Valkyrian internet service providers to consumer or worker-led cooperatives as a means of democratising the internet. The resolution was sponsored by the socialist faction within the party known as the Black Rose, the group largely responsible for the Pirates’ membership in the governing bloc.

What’s more, the Socialist Party has international aspirations, with the conference passing a resolution calling for the formation of a transnational network of socialist movements. With 64 per cent of Valkyrians supporting the socialists in power, they are in a position to enact bold reforms within Valkyria, and there is a growing appetite among Valkyrian socialist leaders to export their socialist vision abroad.

Indeed, socialist internationalism has driven Valkyria closer to Rhayna, its immediate neighbour to the northwest, with both governments having socialists in power with similar goals. With Ravneby and Pzarya growing close, an alliance between the two central Cordilian states could upend the international paradigm and result in a resurgence of socialist fervour throughout Cordilia and elsewhere.

However, this movement to the left in Valkyria is not without opposition. The right-wing parties, the Conservatives, Centrist Democrats, The New Right, and the Northern Party, all held their conferences as well, each separately declaring their opposition to the socialist government and hoping to defeat them in 2025, the year the next general election will be contested in Valkyria.

Despite the declarations made by the right-wing parties, the most recent polling shows that Valkyrians are on the government’s side. With the Northern Party’s credibility lower than ever due to their leader’s indictment and satisfaction with the government’s most recent policy decisions, if a general election was held in October 2023 with all governing parties agreeing to stick together, the government would win an even greater majority than it did in July 2022 with more than three-fifths of the storting’s seats in their control.

In other news…

  • Valkyrian internet service provider raises rates, sparking anger among consumers
  • Valkyrian government considering exchanging embassies with Urkennalaid
  • Arrests grow in Valkyria's northern reach as state of emergency continues