Saturday, 30 December 2017

SOUTH SUDAN - Republic of South Sudan

South Sudan, officially known as the Republic of South Sudan, is a landlocked country in East-Central Africathat gained its independence from the Republic of the Sudan in 2011. Its current capital, Juba is also the largest city. Before the outbreak of a civil war in 2013, it was planned that the capital city would be moved to the more centrally located Ramciel in the future.
South Sudan is bordered by Sudan to the north, Ethiopia to the east, Kenya to the southeast, Uganda to the south, the Democratic Republic of the Congo to the southwest, and the Central African Republic to the west. It includes the vast swamp region of the Sudd, formed by the White Nile and known locally as the Bahr al Jabal.

South Sudan Airmail envelopes ! It is was unbelievable in the past, but now becomes true. These rarest and beautiful airmail envelopes got postmarked from Juba post office, the capital city of South Sudan. There is no working international postal system, so the international mails either will not go or travel via Kenya. DHL, Aramex and Fedex are the main international mails and parcels carriers from Juba. My friend Abdulkarim bought the stamps from post office and sent to me via DHL, then I prepared my envelopes and sent again to him via DHL for postmarking. He again went to the post office and explained about the need and my collection, then they postmarked the envelopes and gave back to him. He sent again all the covers back to me via DHL. These are the costliest covers in my collection. My friend planned to send some covers from Uganda, Kenya and Centrafricaine with South Sudan stamps. Let me see how it works. I heard If the mail can reach in those hubs, it will travel without problem. 

South Sudan entered the world of stamp-issuing countries in July 2011 with a design error already in its first issue and the subsequent withdrawal of that 2.5 SSP stamp. This was followed by a set of stamps, which was designed and proof printed, but never issued, although a few sets are available at internet auction sites. The second set officially issued also has a design error, the 20 SSP stamp shows a picture of an Eland Antelope, but the text on the stamp refers to the White-Eared Kob.

Clearly, it is quite interesting to collect stamps from South Sudan, however, it is not easy, as South Sudan has no international mail connection at all since the routing of international mail via the postal authorities in Sudan ceased in April 2012 with the discontinuation of the direct flights between Juba and Khartoum. No independent postal exchange office has yet been established, although the Directorate of Postal Services intended to sign an agreement with Ethiopian Airlines and Kenyan Airlines early 2012 to carry mail abroad in order to be independent of northern Sudan, but this didn't materialize. As a consequence, it is almost impossible to reach them by mail, although some incoming international mail arrives via Ethiopia and lately especially via Kenya, while the postal authorities has no agreement with any international stamp agency for the marketing of its stamps.

Thursday, 14 December 2017


Sint Eustatius (Dutch pronunciation: [sɪnt øsˈtaːtsiʏs]), also known affectionately to the locals as Statia, is part of the Caribbean Netherlands: i.e. it is a Caribbean island and a special municipality (officially “public body”) of the Netherlands.
The island lies in the northern Leeward Islands portion of the West Indies, southeast of the Virgin Islands. Sint Eustatius is immediately to the northwest of Saint Kitts, and to the southeast of Saba. The regional capital is Oranjestad.
The island has an area of 21 square kilometres (8.1 sq mi). In the 2001 census, the population was recorded as 3,543 inhabitants, with a population density of 169 inhabitants per square kilometre. As of 2015, the population was officially estimated at 3,877. The official language is Dutch, but English is the "language of everyday life" on the island and education is solely in English.A local English-based creole is also spoken informally. Travellers to the island by air arrive through F.D. Roosevelt Airport.
Formerly part of the Netherlands Antilles, Sint Eustatius became a special municipality within The Netherlands on 10 October 2010.
The name of the island, “Sint Eustatius”, is the Dutch name for Saint Eustace (also spelled Eustachius or Eustathius), a legendary Christian martyr, known in Spanish as San Eustaquio and in Portuguese as Santo Eustáquio or Santo Eustácio.
Topographically, the island is saddle-shaped, with the 602 meter-high dormant volcano Quill, (from Dutch kuil, meaning 'pit'—originally referring to its crater) to the southeast and the smaller pair Signal Hill/Little Mountain (or Bergje) and Boven Mountain to the northwest. The Quill crater is a popular tourist attraction on the island. The bulk of the island's population lives in the saddle between the two elevated areas, which forms the center of the island.
The national parks of St. Eustatius, which comprise the Quill/Boven park, the Botanical Garden, and the Marine Park, are all under the control of the non-profit foundation STENAPA.

These beautiful registered airmail envelopes posted from Oranjested, the capital city of St.Eustatius. The covers posted on October 24,2017 and I received in my hands on November 29, 2017. Caribisch Nederland issue a number of thematic stamps in recent years, after the postal service take over by the private company called FXDC. Thank You very much FXDC staff for the perfect service.

Monday, 13 November 2017

Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic

The Sahrawi Republic, officially the Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic (SADR; Spanish: República Árabe Saharaui Democrática; Arabic: الجمهورية العربية الصحراوية الديمقراطية‎‎ al-Jumhūrīyah al-‘Arabīyah aṣ-Ṣaḥrāwīyah ad-Dīmuqrāṭīyah), is a partially recognized state that controls a thin strip of area in the Western Sahara region and claims sovereignty over the entire territory of Western Sahara, a former Spanish colony. SADR was proclaimed by the Polisario Front on February 27, 1976, in Bir Lehlou, Western Sahara, a former communist liberation force (modeled after that of Cuba) which has since reformed its ideological and political views.
The SADR government controls about 20–25% of the territory it claims. It calls the territories under its control the Liberated Territories or the Free Zone. Morocco controls and administers the rest of the disputed territory and calls these lands its Southern Provinces. The SADR government considers the Moroccan-held territory to be occupied territory, while Morocco considers the much smaller SADR-held territory to be a buffer zone.The claimed capital of the SADR is El-Aaiún, while the temporary capital has been moved from Bir Lehlou to Tifariti.
The Sahrawi Republic maintains diplomatic relations with 40 UN states, and is a full member of the African Union.
The SADR acted as a government administration in the Sahrawi refugee camps located in the Tindouf Province of western Algeria. It is headquartered in Camp Rabouni, south of Tindouf, although some official events have taken place in towns in the Free Zone, including the provisional capitals, first Bir Lehlou until 2008, then Tifariti. The government of the SADR claims sovereignty over all of the Western Sahara territory, but has control only within the Free Zone. Several foreign aid agencies, including the UN High Commission for Refugees, and nongovernmental organizations are continually active in the camps.
After a long waiting my first airmail covers from Western Sahara arrived in perfect condition. The cover posted by Brahim who is my friend live in Morocco, frequently travel to Layyoune, the capital city of Western Sahara. He posted my envelopes on October 23, 2017 and I received in my hands on November 13, 2017. He specially requested to the post office staff to send as registered with clear postmark, but the clerk forgot the request. On the left sided first stamp you can see the map of Morocco which includes Western Sahara too.Western Sahara not issued stamps officially, so the stamps we see in the market in the name as "Sahara OCC", SADR, Sahrawi, Western Sahara " are fake and cannot use on envelopes. So It is important to get clear postmark shows the city name 'Layyoune' to prove that the cover posted from Western Sahara. Thank You very much Brahim for the great help!

These two are another envelopes posted from Western Sahara by Brahim, but from different post office in Layyoune. It is posted from the post office called Al Makka, but the postmark is very poor, the postal clerk not listened the request of Brahim to put clear postmark and send as registered. He posted the envelopes on same day, I received in my hands on November 13, 2017. On the right corner stamp you can see the map of Morocco which includes Western Sahara too. Thank You Brahim for the great help !

BASHKORTOSTAN - Республика Башкортостан

The Republic of Bashkortostan (Bashkir: Башҡортостан Республикаһы, Başqortostan Respublikahı; Russian: Респу́блика Башкортоста́н, tr. Respublika Bashkortostan; IPA: [rʲɪsˈpublʲɪkə bəʂkərtɐˈstan]), also historic known as Bashkiria (Russian: Башки́рия, tr. Bashkiriya; IPA: [bɐʂˈkʲirʲɪjə]), is a federal subject of Russia (a republic (state)). It is located between the Volga River and the Ural Mountains. Its capital is the city of Ufa. With the population of 4,072,292 as of the 2010 Census, Bashkortostan is the most populous republic in Russia.
Bashkurdistan, the first ethnic autonomy in Russia, was established on November 28,  On March 20, 1919, it was transformed into the Bashkir ASSR, the first Autonomous Soviet Socialist Republic in RSFSR. In accordance with the Constitution of Bashkortostan and Russian Federation Constitution, Bashkortostan is a state (country), but has no sovereignty. On 11 October 1990 Bashkortostan adopted the Declaration of State Sovereignty, but subsequently abandoned it. 11 October is Republic Day in Bashkortostan.

This is my first cover from Altai Republic. The covers posted on 24 October 2017 and I received on November 03, 2017. The postmark is perfect and you can see a stamp in the middle is written as 'Respublika Bashkortostan' . The particular stamp issued in 2000 as the part of 'Regions of Russia series. My good friend Svetlana sent  the cover from Ufa, the capital city of Bashkortostan. She specially requested to the postal staff for clear postmark. Thank You Svetlana for the perfect cover into my collection !

Monday, 30 October 2017

SOMALILAND - Republic of Somaliland / Jamhuriyadda Somaliland

Somaliland (Somali: Somaliland, Arabic: صوماليلاند‎‎ Ṣūmālīlānd, أرض الصومال Arḍ aṣ-Ṣūmāl), officially the Republic of Somaliland (Somali: Jamhuuriyadda Somaliland, Arabic: جمهورية صوماليلاند‎‎ Jumhūrīyat Ṣūmālīlānd), is a self-declared state internationally recognised as an autonomous region of Somalia.
The government of the de facto state of Somaliland regards itself as the successor state to the former British Somaliland protectorate, which as the State of Somaliland united as scheduled on 1 July 1960 with the Trust Territory of Somaliland (the former Italian Somaliland) to form the Somali Republic.

Somaliland lies in northwestern Somalia, on the southern coast of the Gulf of Aden. It is bordered by the remainder of Somalia (per international recognition) to the east, Djibouti to the northwest, and Ethiopia to the south and west. Its claimed territory has an area of 137,600 square kilometres (53,100 sq mi), with approximately 4 million residents. The capital and the largest city is Hargeisa, with the population of around 1,500,000 residents.
When thinking about Somaliland postal service in 2017, there is no postal service or postal system. Even the stamps issued by Somalia in the past also not accepted for postmarking. There is a ministry for Posts and Telecommunications but ever taken effort to issue stamps or restore the postal service. there are some stamps like labels available, the public use them for paying taxes and fees.

 This is the cancellation what he got from Post and Telecommunication department. No date is mentioned.

My friend Caydaruus arranged these covers by getting cancellation from Posts and telecommunications department in Hargeisa, the capital city of Somaliland. I prepared envelopes with Old "Somaliland Protectorate" stamps issued in British Colonial time, and also Somalia stamps which are bought from Mogadishu by my friend David in 2016.
My friend planned to send a cover from Kenya with Somaliland 'stamps' , hope will reach in my hands. I sent and received the covers via DHL only, It serves via Kenya and Ethiopia.This cover sent via DHL on October 19,2017 and I received on October 24,2017. Old Somaliland Protectorate stamps or Somalia stamps are not valid in Somaliland, so they haven't put cancellation on them. Recently Somalia made agreement with Djibouti regarding international mail exchange, hope in future Somaliland also can start postal system with the cooperation of Somalia and Djibouti.