My Kitchen Rules contestant Kelly has sold down the river her own claim she has visited "more than 42 countries".
She's sold it down the Hutt River in Western Australia, to be more specific.
Kelly, however also lists several disputed European regions and microstates as separate countries, claiming to have visited both Kosovo and Serbia, Monaco and France, Andorra and Spain, and San Marino and Vatican City as well as Italy.
- Jane Watkins, mX, 18th Feb 2014.
Granted that mX isn't known for quality journalism and I don't even think that it's worth picking up; so the only reason that this article came to me because I was handed a clipping and asked to comment.
This article reads like a classic bait and switch, firstly stating the fact that Hutt River Province is not a nation, then listing legitimate nations before making the assertion that there is "dispute" in the sovereignty of the countries listed.
If we are to fact check Jane Watkins' column that My Kitchen Rules contestant Kelly's claim has been "sold down the river", it is worth noting just how much "dispute" there is in the sovereignty of the countries listed.
Monaco is a sovereign country and is a full member of the United Nations and acheived that status in 1993. Monaco's sovereignty was formally recognized by the Franco-Monegasque Treaty of 1861.
Monaco is a sovereign country and is a full member of the United Nations and achieved that status in 1993. Andorra achieved its independence from the Kingdom of Aragon in 1278 and has remained a sovereign country ever since.
San Marino is a sovereign country and is a full member of the United Nations and achieved that status in 1992.
Tradition holds that Saint Marinus left the island of Arba and fled to Monte Titano whilst being persecuted during the reign of the Roman Emperor Diocletian. San Marino cites the founding date of the Republic as 3 September 301. In 1631, its independence was recognized by the Papacy.
During the unification of Italy, Giuseppe Garibaldi respected the will of San Marino and it remained separate to the new Italian state.
The Vatican City State has a history which is troubled and difficult but finally on 7th June 1929, the dispute of the sovereignty of the Holy See was resolved when Benito Mussolini and Pietro Gasparri signed the Lateran Treaty which formally established the independent state.
Even German troops as they occupied the city of Rome during the Second World War recognised the neutrality of the Vatican City.
Kosovo is the only troubling thing on the list. Although it declared itself an independent state in 2008, officially Serbia doesn't recognise its secession and instead regards it as a "UN-governed entity". Kosovo's independence is however recognised by 108 out of 193 UN member states, including most of the EU and even Australia¹. Kosovo has even applied for membership to the EU and it does not use the Serbian Dinar. Further to this, on 29 June 2009, the Republic of Kosovo became a full member of the World Bank.
All five of these countries use the Euro and four of five of them even have the authority to issue Euro currency.
Okay, Hutt River Province isn't a country but with the possible exception of Kosovo (and even then that exception is only half correct), the rest most certainly are; with full recognition by the United Nations. It seems strange to me that international organisations should recognise the sovereignty of certain countries when mX columnists do not.