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31 Countries and Territories in the World That Do Not Have an Army

Written by Tamarindo News

There are nations that not only receive capital in large numbers as off-shore centers and their normative benevolence towards fiscal practices.

Most of them, in addition, save the military bill.

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They have no armed forces. Although their national security is guaranteed by great superpowers.

Some nations on the planet get a double benefit.

Through income, attracting huge amounts of capital they receive in their territorial jurisdictions attracted by the low imposition of their regulatory laws. But also on the side of expenses. Because most of these territories, which present the highest per capita income levels on the planet.

Sometimes, in the big emerging markets, they do not dedicate reimbursements to their military games. They survive without armed forces.

Nore they seem to need them; the superpowers take care of it. They take responsibility for your safety in the event of danger to their national defenses. Or, in certain cases, jurisdictional, to be more exact.

These are the 31 countries or territories without military forces:

1. Andorra. The Pyrenean mini-state of only 85,000 inhabitants has its own police force, the Cos de Policia d’Andorra, but it is not a military body. The defense of this independent enclave is the responsibility of Spain and France, by proximity.

2. Aruba. This Caribbean island state is a separate and semi-autonomous territory of the Netherlands that has emerged in recent years as an especially popular destination for tourism. The defense of its 116,000 inhabitants is in charge of its former metropolis and focuses its efforts, essentially, to combat organized crime and terrorism.

3. Cayman Islands. Also located in the Caribbean, they belong to the overseas territories of the United Kingdom, a nation that offers and administers the defense of its archipelago, just 150 miles south of Cuba. Still, there is a national police force, the Royal Cayman Islands Police Force.

4.- Cook Islands. They take their name from the Captain of the British Royal Navy, James Cook. An independent island located in the south of the Pacific but a free state associated with New Zealand, the country that is in charge of its defense, although only at the request and upon prior request of the authorities of this island country.

5.- Costa Rica. The Central American nation gave up having its own army in 1949, although its police forces usually perform the functions of a military establishment. The so-called Switzerland of Central America proclaimed its permanent status as a neutral and unarmed country in 1983. But its protection corresponds to the United States.

6. Curaçao. Another island and Caribbean state that lacks an Army. However, its security is controlled by the Netherlands, which also assumes the foreign policy of its almost 150,000 inhabitants. In a referendum in 2009 it was approved that the country should have its own government, although within the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The Dutch Caribbean Coast Guard also provides them with maritime security.

7. Dominica. Island of the Antilles, a member of the Commonwealth, the union of sovereign states that were former British colonies. Under the protection of London. Despite having a police force that also acts as a coast guard, the Commonwealth of Dominica Police Force.

8.- Faroe Islands. Located in the North Atlantic, between the British Isles, Norway and Iceland, they have 51,000 inhabitants. Denmark, on which they depend due to their status as an autonomous territory attached to this European partner, is the one that provides them with defense in case of attack. It is done by his Arctic Command, a division of its armed forces.

9.- French Polynesia. In the southern Pacific Ocean whose most famous territory is Tahiti. It has about 290,000 inhabitants registered. Its safety depends on France.

10.- Greenland. The largest island in the North Atlantic is an autonomous territory that belongs to Denmark. Closer to North America, the US has just made the third historic attempt to acquire this territory and incorporate it into its federation of states. Since 2008, it has enjoyed broad powers of its own government. In domestic matters. A year later, it approved its Self-Government Law, which recognizes the ability of its citizens to request the right to self-determination under international law. Copenhagen exercises control over several areas, including foreign and security. Also the financial one.

12.- Iceland. Although it is a member of NATO, it does not have a standing army. The Atlantic Alliance is responsible for its defense. Since 2006, all US forces withdrew from the country. Reykjavik participates in peacekeeping missions through civilian crisis management units.

13. Kiribati. An independent state since 1979, it is located west of the Pacific Ocean. It has 109,000 inhabitants. The so-called Gilbert Islands are constitutionally prohibited from creating armed forces. Although it has police forces.

14. Liechtenstein. It is the sixth smallest state in the world. It has police forces that cooperate closely with the armies of its neighbors, Austria and Switzerland.

15.- Marshall Islands. After almost four decades under the US Administration, they achieved their independence in 1986. However, the US continues to grant them military protection to guarantee their national defense.

16. Mauritius. The Indian Ocean island, with 1.3 million inhabitants, achieved its independence from the United Kingdom in 1968. It has paramilitary units with police status, the Special Mobile Force, in charge of the country’s internal and external security.

17.- Micronesia. Most of its territory is the Caroline Islands, which joined other island territories in 1979, ending the US guardianship. The Federation of Micronesia States became independent in 1986. Without an army, its security depends on the United States.

18.- Monaco. The second smallest country in the world, with just 31,000 inhabitants, has ceded the security of its city-state to France.

19.- Montserrat. Caribbean island considered a British overseas territory since 1783. Repeated volcanic eruptions have caused thousands of inhabitants to leave the country in the last 25 years. Although it has its own police force, it lacks a military force and depends on the UK for its defense.

20.- Nauru. South of the Marshall Islands, it is the smallest republic on the planet. After going through various sovereignties in the last two centuries, the country was declared a United Nations trust territory after World War II. In 1968, it obtained independence. With just 10,000 inhabitants, its defense, through a bilateral agreement, is supplied and managed by Australia.

21.- Niue. In the South Pacific, the island has 1,600 inhabitants and is a self-governing territory, although freely associated with New Zealand, which is the nation that provides foreign security. It has a police force.

22.- Palau. Located west of the former Caroline Islands. The archipelago opposed its unification with the Federation of Micronesia States in 1978 and declared itself immediately afterwards as an independent state. Even so, it still has a free association agreement with the US, whose military forces are allowed to be stationed on its territory. Although it has never happened. It has a national police force.

23.- Panama. The Central American nation abolished the army in 1990 and created the Panamanian Public Forces. It has police forces, a national aviation service and border surveillance units. Since 1994, the Constitution of Panama prohibits the creation of a permanent army.

24.- Saint Lucia. Island belonging to the Commonwealth. Without an army, it has a police force and special units and a specific naval unit.

25.- Saint Vincent and the Grenadines. Caribbean island that achieved independence in 1979 after being subordinate to the United Kingdom. Of 102,000 inhabitants, they lack an army, but have their own police force.

26.- Samoa. The first Polynesian nation to gain independence, in 1962. It does not have a defense structure or regular armed forces, but it does have police units. Its defense is agreed with New Zealand.

27. San Marino. It is not only the oldest republic in the world, but the third smallest European country. This mini-state, geographically inserted in Italy, does not have an army either, although it does have voluntary military forces that act in official ceremonies and are likely to be used as police forces. In an emergency, this state reserves the right to request all San Marinos between the ages of 16 and 60 to make use of arms. The responsibility for its defense rests with Italy.

28. Saint Martin (Sint Maarten). Autonomous Caribbean island, although it is part of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. While its northern territory is an overseas enclave of France. Defense is the responsibility of the Netherlands.

29.- Solomon Islands. Independent since 1978, they have a police force. Between 2003 and 2017, it had to receive police and military aid from fifteen countries to restore political and civil order after successive waves of violence, which catapulted crime rates to exorbitant limits.

30.- Tuvalu. Since its independence in 1978, the Pacific island – known as Ellice during its period as a British colony -, the fourth smallest country on the planet, with only 11,000 inhabitants, has a police force, but no military force.

31.- Vanuatu. Until the proclamation of its independence, in 1980, it belonged to the New Hebrides, Pacific territories administered by the United Kingdom and France. Its state is made up of 80 islands. Without the Army, it does have a police force, a Mobility force and a maritime police wing.

Of all these states, a majority group is included among the different international classifications of tax havens, although these lists are being released by alleged economic-tax information exchange agreements to monitor and prosecute possible crimes of tax evasion and money laundering. 

The case of Switzerland

Another significant case is that of Switzerland. It has managed to be the image of neutrality. Historically. But the supposedly most pacifist nation is the thirty-third most powerful army on the planet, according to the 2019 Global FirePower ranking and the country with the most armed population; at the rate of 46 weapons for every hundred inhabitants. Almost one for every two residents.

In addition to requiring, by law, military training for its citizens between the ages of 20 and 42. To men, on a mandatory basis and to women on a voluntary basis. A paradox in a state that has never participated in military conflicts, but through which 2 million private weapons are moved in the possession of its 8.3 million residents. In addition to the arsenal of his Army.

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