Painting of the Forte Sao Jose

Map of Pontinha

A Brief History

At the end of 1999 beginning of the year 2000, His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I, a Madeiran art teacher, acquired possession and ownership of the Pontinha Forte São José islet for the equivalent of 45,000 euros, with the aim of studying the strength of the waves.

Since that date all projects by Dom Renato I were made unfeasible by the Portuguese authorities and have been ridiculed by the civil authorities, given the circumstances and the fact that the Portuguese government was omitting certain legal facts to the various national and international authorities and thus has totally disrespected and disregarded United Nations protocol and international law regarding the UN standards over a sovereign nations nautical territorial rights.

In November 2007, His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I presented a “request for detachment of the Principality of the Island of Pontinha” to the local government representative in the Autonomous Region of Madeira. His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I had officially declared the independence of the islet, calling it the Principality of Pontinha in 2005, having himself as sovereign of the islet, based on the fact that at the time of the original sale, the original possession and dominion of the islet was under the KINGDOM of Portugal of His Majesty, Dom Carlos I, who had published a Royal Charter, to be issued to the buyer, which not only granted them possession of the islet, but DOMINION over it and that the current Portuguese state recognizes this Royal Document to possess valid and preceded legal effect.

His Majesty, Dom Carlos I, and the government at that time subscribe and sign the Royal Letter, which granted sovereignty over the islet to its new owner.

“Dom Carlos I (…) does well to transmit to you, by irrevocable and pure sale, all the possession and dominion that in that building had the National Treasury for (…) the bidder, his heirs, and successors (…)”

In December 2015, bitcoin became the official currency of the country. In 2016, a documentary entitled “A Sovereign Dream” about His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I, and the Principality of Pontinha was released at the Madeira Film Festival. In February 2017, José Manuel Coelho, a Madeiran politician known for his eccentric behavior, requested political asylum in the small principality, which was granted by His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I.

On September 25, 2017, the National Republican Guard (GNR) arrested His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I and charged him with the crime of disobedience to law enforcement officers, initiating the process of occupation and dispossession of Forte São José.

His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I demands that the islet of Pontinha and Forte São José be released from Madeiran/Portuguese occupation/possession with its 200 nautical mile sea platform, in accordance with the original Royal Charter and License of 1903.

The Royal Charter of 1903 of His Majesty, Dom Carlos I had already alienated (liberated through sale) the islet of Pontinha from the Kingdom of Portugal, and thus Pontinha could be described as a “mini” or “micro” state.

This conflict has not yet been resolved, and there truly is one. The relationship between Portugal and the Principality of Pontinha must now be brought before the African Union, the European Union, the United Nations, and the International Court of Justice in The Hague.

One might think that this is obvious since the sovereignty of Pontinha was established in His Majesty, Dom Carlos I’s Royal Charter of 1903, long before the Portuguese revolution and thus before the abolition of the Portuguese monarchy.

The Principality of Pontinha is a very humble Principality, therefore all diplomats perform their activities on a voluntary basis, and not for payment, since they consider assisting His Royal Highness, Dom Renato I, beyond being an honor, as a matter of being a fully principled person; it is a matter of respect, individual freedom, personal property, and international law.

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