United Galactic Worlds
The United Galactic Worlds or UGW as they are more commonly known, is an intergalactic peace keeping organization similar in design to the United Nations, and which performs a very similar responsibility to the wider galaxy. However, just like the UN, it is also a very corrupt and ineffective organization which does more to encourage illegal activities and war than to solve either. It's own corruption and impotence eventually leads to its abandonment after the events of Sebius, bringing the UGW's millennias long reign to an end. It is eventually replaced by the ASW who, while suffering some of the same issues as the UGW, is able to do much more good than the UGW ever could through its new and unique joint governance model vs the UGW's very tight and restrictive senatorial model.
All races across the entirety of the galaxy enjoyed one of five basic forms of membership or association with the UGW. They are ranked from lowest to highest.
- Trade Partnership - A Trade Partnership, or "Commerce Treaty Membership", as it was sometimes known, was essentially a treaty agreement between a given race, republic, alliance, kingdom/empire, etc and the UGW (and all its members) that allowed either free and unrestricted, or else selective forms of trade, depending on the terms of the treaty, between the treaty member and any and all worlds under the UGW umbrella. This treaty only covered trade, and nothing else, meaning that no military vessels, no matter the reason, could cross beyond the borders of their own sovereign space for any reason whatsoever, save only with special permission. Anyone who was a citizen or subject of the member state, as well, was forbidden from crossing their sovereign border into UGW allied space save only with special permission from the UGW in the form of a visa. Likewise, citizens of UGW member governments are forbidden from entering the Trade Partner's sovereign space without a visa, and no military vessel may enter for any reason whatsoever, save only with special permission.
- Treaty Ally - Treaty Allies were essentially one step above a Trade Partnership and included all of the benefits of the fore, with the added benefit of mutual defense. In this case military vessels can leave the sovereign space of the treaty state and enter UGW space, but only on grounds of mutual defense, and for no other purposes. Crossing one another's borders, outside of these stipulations requires special permission. This would roughly be equivalent to what membership in NATO is.
- Treaty Member - A Treaty Member is the lowest form of membership within the UGW. It doesn't have the advantages of a charter or citizen membership, but Treaty Members do have more benefits than a Treaty Ally in that they are given limited representation within the UGW, and a limited, predefined roll within the UGW as set down by the treaty drafted between the UGW and the Treaty Member. This includes unrestricted travel by the member's citizens and military within the UGW, and a roll within the defense of the UGW, again, as stipulated in the membership treaty. A real world example of this would be what the territory of Puerto Rico is to the USA.
- Charter Member - A charter member enjoys full representation within the UGW, and all the benefits and advantages of being a full member of the UGW. However, unlike the previous three types of membership/alliance with the UGW, each Charter Member gives up a small portion of their sovereignty to the UGW in exchange for the vast array of benefits that they gain from this membership. A real world example of this would be what the individual states in the USA are to the Federal Government. IE, they retain most of their sovereignty, but also surrender a portion of it to the central government (The Federal government in the case of the USA, and the UGW in the case of the Charter Member) centering mostly around trade and mutual self defense, although other things may be required of the individual members depending on the needs of the UGW as a whole, including supplies, resources, military recruits or other needs.
- Citizen Member - A citizen member is an individual (not a republic, empire, etc) who is a full and recognized citizen of the UGW, either through birth or naturalization. This is the highest, and rarest form of membership within the UGW, and is restricted to only those individuals living on worlds directly owned and controlled by the UGW itself. These individuals are not limited by race, age, sex or creed, and hold no citizenry or allegiance to anyone other than the UGW. An example of this would be someone who is a citizen of the USA, but in turn holds no citizenship or allegiance to any of the 50 states that make up its republic.
Alliance of the Nine
Unlike most other races within the galaxy, who are members of the UGW, The Nine Ancient Races hold a special place within the organization, even having their own separate courts, council, and more, all designed to keep peace between the nine, and avoid another war like the one that led to the rise of the Nine, and the general devastation of the galaxy that resulted from this confrontation. And, while not an official membership level or category, the Nine enjoy a position of power and privilege within the UGW that even supersedes that of citizen members.