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"Since the planet is uninhabited, the moon of Pantora reserves the right to continue as its protectorate."
Senator Riyo Chuchi, regarding Orto Plutonia[src]

A protectorate was a system of government where a territory was controlled by a foreign government while remaining autonomous. Moons had the right to claim their planet as a protectorate providing that they were uninhabited, and were able to establish military installations on them to protect them. Prior to the discovery of its indigenous Talz population, the planet Orto Plutonia was a protectorate of its moon, Pantora. After making first contact with the Talz and determining that they were sentient, representatives of the Pantoran Assembly conceded control of Orto Plutonia to the Talz.[1]

When the Galactic Empire took over most of the galaxy after the Clone Wars, the Twi'lek homeworld of Ryloth officially became a protectorate of the new government. On Imperial star charts, it was listed as "free and independent," though the designations did not reflect reality.[2]

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