FAS are countries that have signed a comprehensive agreement with the United States called the Compact of Free Association (COFA) that covers diplomatic, economic, and military ties with the United States.
COFA’s present deal is due to expire in 2023, so these arrangements aren’t meant to last forever.
As a result of a COFA, the FAS are sovereign states with the authority to choose their course of action in international affairs. Due to their non-citizen status, FAS citizens are unable to access Medicaid, Medicare, or Social Security benefits.
Overruling any FAS policy that interferes with US defense is a legal obligation of the United States. Additional funding may be made available via the FAS by US government agencies, such as NOAA, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), as well as the National Science Foundation (NSF).
Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI), Palau, as well as the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) are all states that are considered to be Freely Associated States.
After World War II, the United States administered the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands, which included these three countries.
Location: Marshall Islands is a Pacific Ocean island nation that is somewhat to the west of the International Date Line (IDL). In 1945, the US seized the islands from the Japanese and used them as a military training ground for the Pacific theater of World War II.
On the islands, the United States conducted 67 nuclear tests. The United States recognized the Marshall Islands’ constitution and government organization on May 1, 1979. This agreement was struck in 1986.
The government of the Marshall Islands now works under a parliamentary-presidential system.
Palau is an archipelago of more than 500 islands in the western Pacific Ocean’s Micronesia area. Japan surrendered the island of Palau to the US in 1944. Founded on January 1st, 1981, the Republic of Palau signed its COFA the following year.
Zip codes 96939 and 96940 have been assigned to Palau, which now gets regular US Mail service. The President of Palau serves as both the head of state and the head of government in this democratic republic.
Over 600 islands make up the Federated States of Micronesia, which includes Pohnpei, Kosrae, Chuuk, and Yap states. Operation Hailstone took place in Truk Lagoon, where most of the Japanese fleet was located after they were captured in World War I.
Also See: Fragile States Index 2022
Trust Territory of Pacific Islands was established in 1947 to oversee the archipelago.
Federal States of Micronesia was formed in 1979 when four Trust Territory districts passed a new constitution, signing a COFA in 1986 and gaining international recognition as sovereign states in 1990.
Under the nation’s 1979 constitution, which protects basic human rights and ensures the separation of government functions, the country continues to operate under its current constitution.
The President and Vice President of the United States are chosen by Congress from the four senators elected from each state.