ASC Department of Foreign Affairs

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The Department of Foreign Affairs (ASDFA or DFA), otherwise known as For. Affairs or the Foreign Affairs Department, is a Department of the Castle of the Unitary Government of Cyberia that is in charge of establishing and maintaining relations between the country of Cyberia and all other nations and their populations beyond the Antarctic State's borders. It is the DFA's continuous duty to assess past, present, and future diplomatic relations, and build upon them in the pursuit of the longevity of the ASC and its prosperity, including quelling disputes between the AS and foreign nations. The DFA is known as the sole point of primary communication between Cyberia and the outside world, in the context of international politics and negotiations. Ideally, the DFA acts as the relay between the outside world and the various interior departments of the castle, establishing connections and keeping them open for as long as necessary. In practice, there is not much stopping other departments from contacting the outside world but the general courtesy to allow the DFA to do the job for them. Overall, the Department of Foreign Affairs works well to keep the county of Cyberia in good or otherwise neutral standing with the globe.

History

The Department of Foreign Affairs currently stands as the country's youngest and smallest department of the nine in total. The DFA was formed out of the joining of several relegations of duty to small parts of each department. Each department once had their own foreign affairs divisions, which would focus on the best interests of their department when given international issues. This changed in 2185, when it was decided that all departments would detach their foreign affairs divisions and combine them all into a completely new department complete with its own President in the High Castle.

Office of the President of Foreign Affairs

See also: Unitary Government of Cyberia § Offices of the Presidents

The subordinate agents immediately below the President of Foreign Affairs are given the task of keeping their President knowledgeable of global issues, especially those directly affecting the Antarctic State, and plans that indent to influence those issues. The Presidential subordinates also advise their President and all newly elected Presidents of Foreign Affairs of what consequences can and will follow with any decision the President may intend to make.

Major Responsibilities

International Relations

The DFA most importantly operates for the sake of the good of the of the Antarctic State of Cyberia and its government in the eyes of foreign nations and their governments. It is the DFA's job to facilitate peaceful and prosperous communication and negotiations between the Unitary Government of Cyberia and the outside world, which it conducts with the cooperation with the other eight departments. At best, it is seen as bad manners on the respective President's part for a department to communicate or negotiate with an outside nation on official government business without first consulting the Department of Foreign Affairs. At worst, it can be seen as treasonous, depending on what is passed between a department and the outside world.

International Trade

The DFA establishes and maintains trade agreements with the outside world, often scrutinizing the actions of outer nations and assessing whether or not those actions violate trade agreements, or otherwise make present and/or future agreements questionable. Similarly, the DFA is tasked with scrutinizing Cyberia's own actions in the pursuit of maintaining good standing with trade agreements.

Contrary to popular belief, the DFA does not control how and by how much goods are taxed when traded; rather, those taxes are controlled by the Department of Treasury.

Customs

The DFA administrates the authority of customs as it pertains to international travel, and international shipping of consumer goods to persons (as opposed to companies) as recipients. Incoming commercial goods are subject to tariffs which either party in the shipping transaction may pay. In regards to international travel, the DFA's customs service is the first point of contact upon arrival into the country, and the last point of contact upon departure from the country. Cyberian customs is known to be quite thorough and arguably aggressive in their searches, seizures, and otherwise adherence to AS customs law.

Immigration and Naturalization

Being the most primary point of contact between the country and the world outside its borders, the DFA is the first department to deal with any and all persons wishing to immigrate into the nation. The DFA has the power to assess, accept, reject, and educate (naturalization) all incoming immigrants, though the latter is usually delegated to the Department of Civilian Affairs.

Major Divisions

External Communications Network

The External Communications Network (ECN) is the division responsible for facilitating communication between the globe and the many departments of the castle that is the Antarctic State. The ECN is where connections are established and terminated as need be and for as long as necessary for international relations regarding government intentions and action. The ECN also advises their own government of what they should and should not do in order to keep the outside world viewing the country in a good light. The departments are well within their right to dismiss the ECN's advice in the pursuit of international relations, however it would be seen as unprofessional.

Foreign Intelligence Agency

The Foreign Intelligence Agency (FIA) is responsible for recording and studying all actions of interest that occur outside of the borders of the Antarctic State. It is common knowledge that the FIA notes down all that they can about foreign countries, especially when communication or negotiations are made between them and Cyberia. What the FIA does with noted information, is often given the some of the highest levels of classification in regards to national security and confidentiality.

International Trade Contact

The International Trade Contact (ITC) is a component responsible for the negotiation and fulfillment, and sometimes the prohibition, of international trade with the Antarctic State. To a somewhat lesser extent, the ITC is also where the DFA exercises its authority over customs. The ITC handles imports as well as exports as they pertain to international trade, and the customs processes as they pertain to individuals. The ITC exercises manpower in points of influx to and outflux from the country, most commonly being seen by the general public in points of entry such as harbors and airports. In harbors, the ITC upholds international agreements in the context of what can and cannot be shipped and under what conditions.

State Ambassadorship

The DFA's State Ambassadorship is a division mostly responsible for educating and appointing ambassadors to many different, sometimes overlapping global regions. These ambassadors are expected to travel internationally in order to more directly exercise diplomatic relations with the Antarctic State of Cyberia. State ambassadors agree to and are wholly expected to represent the Antarctic State abroad, as well as give protection and service to home-country citizens who happen to be travelling abroad to a country that happens to house a Cyberian ambassador.

Within the State Ambassadorship, there also exists a specific division for protocol, which seeks to advise Cyberian ambassadors as well as foreign dignitaries on how to engage in the proper etiquette of the countries they may visit.