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Indian man claims 800-square-mile strip of land between Egypt and Sudan as his own country... and says he is open to offers of 'foreign aid'

  • Suyash Dixit planted his flag in no-man's land between Egypt and Sudan
  • Bir Tawil is an 800-square mile strip which is legally 'unclaimed territory'
  • Mr Dixit has declared it the Kingdom of Dixit and is 'open to investment'
  • He is one of several people who have 'claimed' the land in recent years
  • None have been recognized by any government or international organisation

An Indian man claims to have established his own kingdom after travelling to a no-man's land between Egypt and Sudan and declaring it his own.

Suyash Dixit 'founded' the Kingdom of Dixit on the unclaimed land of Bir Tawil, an 800-square-mile strip of land south of the Egyptian border.

While Bir Tawil is legally unclaimed territory, several people have attempted to colonise it over the years, including a Russian amateur radio enthusiast and an American man who wanted to make his daughter a real-life princess.

King of the desert: Suyash Dixit claims to have 'founded' his own kingdom on the unclaimed land of Bir Tawil, an 800-square-mile strip south of the Egyptian border

King of the desert: Suyash Dixit claims to have 'founded' his own kingdom on the unclaimed land of Bir Tawil, an 800-square-mile strip south of the Egyptian border

Bir Tawil, meaning 'deep well' in Arabic, is situated south of the border between Egypt and Sudan, but neither country wants to lay claim to it. 

It is said to be the the only known land on earth where humans can live and survive but is not a part of any state or country

The discrepancy has meant Bir Tawil has stayed as a de facto 'no man's land' for more than 100 years.

Mr Dixit travelled from his hometown of Indore, India, to Bir Tawil to declare himself the 'first king of Dixit'.  

The previously unclaimed land of Bir Tawil is an 800-square-mile strip of land south of the Egyptian border, north of Sudan 

The previously unclaimed land of Bir Tawil is an 800-square-mile strip of land south of the Egyptian border, north of Sudan 

This land is my land: Mr Dixit travelled from Indore, India to claim the land as his own - although he is by no means the first person to do so

This land is my land: Mr Dixit travelled from Indore, India to claim the land as his own – although he is by no means the first person to do so

My own, my precious: Mr Dixit planted a seed and watered it, stating that in doing so, he is the rightful King of Bir Tawil
My own, my precious: Mr Dixit planted a seed and watered it, stating that in doing so, he is the rightful King of Bir Tawil

My own, my precious: Mr Dixit planted a seed and watered it, stating that in doing so, he is the rightful King of Bir Tawil

Boasting about his newfound royal status, he posted on Facebook that Dixit is 'opening foreign investments to our country and nationality applications.'

GAME OF THRONES: WHO IS THE REAL KING OF BIR TAWIL?

Several people have tried to lay claim to the small piece of land over the years.

In recent years, the most notable 'king' is Jeremiah Heaton, a farmer from Virginia who wanted to fulfil his daughter's birthday wish to become a real-life princess.

'King' Heaton travelled to Bir Tawil to plant his flag there on June 16, 2014 – his daughter Emily's seventh birthday.

Since then, he has named it The Kingdom of North Sudan and formally applied to the United Nations for observer entity status.

Mr Heaton also launched a fundraising campaign to build a a state-of-the art laboratory dedicated to researching how crops could be grown with limited water supplies.

Another contender is Russian Dmitry Zhikharev, and 'amateur radio operator' from Siberia.

 He planted his flag in Bir Tawil in December 2014 along with his friend Mikhail Ronkainen 'Count of Bir Tawil'.

He has contested Mr Heaton's claim.

He writes: 'I, Suyash Dixit, first of my name and the protector of the realm, declare myself as the king of “Kingdom of Dixit”. I call myself, King Suyash First from today. 

'I declare this unclaimed land of Bir Tawil as my country from now to the eternity of time. 

'I pledge to continue to work for the prosperity of my people of the country and this motherland.'

In the Facebook post he also shares details of his journey to Bir Tawil, writing that he had to get a permission from the Egyptian military to travel to the land.  

'It was an epic journey starting from Abu Simbel at 4am.

'We got it on three conditions: no photos of military areas (which is almost everything), you be back in the single day and you do not carry valuables.

We drove for six hours straight in the middle of the desert and barren lands and crossing one military base to the location.

'In this epic voyage, there were times we thought the car just cannot make any far from here or we don’t have enough fuel now or we just don’t have time to cross that hill but a little courage and some math is all you need sometimes.' 

Upon arrival Mr Dixit planted a seed on the land and planted his flag in two places, re-naming Bir Tawil the Kingdom of Dixit. 

Long journey: After six hours of driving, Mr Dixit planted his flag in two places, re-naming Bir Tawil the Kingdom of Dixit.

Long journey: After six hours of driving, Mr Dixit planted his flag in two places, re-naming Bir Tawil the Kingdom of Dixit.

Mr Dixit acknowledges that he is not the first person to proclaim the land as his own.

He continues in his post: 'Now I know that some 5-10 folks have done it in the past as well but this is my land now (as I have officially planted the seeds following the rules) and if they want it back, there will be a war (over a cup of coffee at the Starbucks probably)! 

While Mr Dixit writes on Facebook that he is going to 'write an email to the UN', he may struggle to fulfil his dream – and not only because of other people who already lay claim to Bir Tawil.

The United Nations has four criteria for statehood: a permanent population, a defined territory, a government and he ability to enter into relations with another state.  

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Journalist, writer and broadcaster, based in London and Paris, her latest book is Touché: A French Woman's Take on the English. Read more articles from Agnes.

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