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Form of Government

The Faroe Islands have home rule under the Danish crown. We have our own parliament, Prime Minister, flag, language, banknotes, football team and even international direct dialling code (+298; not +45 which is for Denmark).

The Faroese parliament decides all matters except policing, justice, defence and foreign affairs which remain under Danish control.

Although Denmark is a member of the European Union and part of the EU’s Schengen agreement regarding the free movement of goods and people, the Faroe Islands remain outside both the EU and Schengen.

The Faroese flag is Scandinavian in tradition and appearance. It features a red cross, off-set, edged by blue, against a white background.

It was devised in 1919 by the Faroese student, Jens Oliver Lisberg, and was first raised in his home village, Fámjin on the island of Suðuroy, on the occasion of a wedding. The original flag can be seen in the village church there.

On April 25th 1940, the British government gave approval for the flag to be flown by all Faroese vessels. This date is now celebrated as Flag Day and is a national holiday. With home rule in 1948, the flag was recognised by the Danish government as the official flag of the Faroe Islands.