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Montserrat: Government#

Country nameconventional long form: none
conventional short form: Montserrat
CapitalPlymouth; note - Plymouth was abandoned in 1997 because of volcanic activity; interim government buildings have been built at Brades Estate in the Carr's Bay/Little Bay vicinity at the northwest end of Montserrat Plymouth, note - Plymouth was abandoned in 1997 because of volcanic activity, ...
geographic coordinates: 16 42 N, 62 13 W
time difference: UTC-4 (1 hour ahead of Washington, DC, during Standard Time)
Dependency statusoverseas territory of the UK
Administrative divisions3 parishes; Saint Anthony, Saint Georges, Saint Peter
Constitutionprevious 1960; latest effective 1 September 2010; amended 2011 (2012)
Executive branchchief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952); represented by Governor Adrian DAVIS (since 8 April 2011)
head of government: Premier Rueben T. MEADE (since 27 September 2011); note - the office of premier came into effect with the new Constitution Order; he replaces the chief minister
cabinet: Executive Council consists of the governor, the premier, 3 other ministers, the attorney general, and the finance secretary
elections: the monarchy is hereditary; governor appointed by the monarch; following legislative elections, the leader of the majority party usually becomes premier
Flag descriptionblue, with the flag of the UK in the upper hoist-side quadrant and the Montserratian coat of arms centered in the outer half of the flag; the arms feature a woman in green dress, Erin, the female personification of Ireland, standing beside a yellow harp and embracing a large dark cross with her right arm; Erin and the harp are symbols of Ireland reflecting the territory's Irish ancestry; blue represents awareness, trustworthiness, determination, and righteousness
Independencenone (overseas territory of the UK)
Judicial branchhighest court(s): the Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court (ECSC) is the itinerant superior court of record for the 9-member Organization of Eastern Caribbean States to include Montserrat; the ECSC - with its headquarters on St. Lucia - is headed by the chief justice and is comprised of the Court of Appeal with 3 justices and the High Court with 16 judges; sittings of the Court of Appeal and High Court rotate among the 9 member states; 1 judge of the Supreme Court is a resident of Montserrat and presides over the High Court
note - Montserrat is also a member of the Caribbean Court of Justice
judge selection and term of office: Eastern Caribbean Supreme Court chief justice appointed by Her Majesty, Queen ELIZABETH II; other justices and judges appointed by the Judicial and Legal Services Commission; Court of Appeal justices appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 65; High Court judges appointed for life with mandatory retirement at age 62
subordinate courts: magistrate's court
Legal systemEnglish common law
Legislative branchunicameral Legislative Council (11 seats; 9 members popularly elected to serve five-year terms; the attorney general and financial secretary sit as ex-officio members)
elections: last held on 8 September 2009 (next to be held by 2014)
election results: percent of vote by party - NA; seats by party - MCAP 6, independents 3
International organization participationCaricom, CDB, Interpol (subbureau), OECS, UPU
National holidaybirthday of Queen ELIZABETH II, second Saturday in June (1926)
Political pressure groups and leadersNA
Political parties and leadersMontserrat Democratic Party or MDP (Lowell LEWIS)
Movement for Change and Prosperity or MCAP (Roselyn CASSELL-SEALY)
New People's Liberation Movement or NPLM (John A. OSBORNE)
Suffrage18 years of age; universal
Government typeNA
Diplomatic representation in the USnone (overseas territory of the UK)
National anthemnote: as a territory of the United Kingdom, "God Save the Queen" is official (see United Kingdom)
Diplomatic representation from the USnone (overseas territory of the UK)