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"Our friends from the Trade Federation have pledged their support, and when their battle droids are combined with yours, we will have an army greater than any in the Galaxy."
―Count Dooku[1]

The Separatist Council, also known as the Council of Separatists, the Separatist Union, or the Leadership Council, was an executive corps in charge of the Confederacy of Independent Systems during the Clone Wars, the conflict between the Galactic Republic and the Confederacy itself, which was seeking to leave the former. Sith Lord Count Dooku originally summoned wealthy businesspeople and politicians to the planet Geonosis, where they formed a pact with a common goal: to create a "new" governing body for the galaxy and obliterate the Republic. The members of the Council participated actively during the war, leading brigades of battle droids against the forces of the Republic, though mainly to further their own ends.

During the course of the war, bounties were placed on the Council members' heads, which led to their rendezvous at the planet Belderone. Shortly after, however, the public leader and Head of the Council, Dooku, died at the hands of the young Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker. The Council was placed under the personal protection of General Grievous, Supreme Commander of the Separatist Droid Army, and now leader of the Separatist Movement and the Council. The Council members, along with Grievous, were relocated to the planet Utapau due to security issues, but were discovered by Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi and an armada of clone troopers.

Sith Lord Darth Sidious ordered the Council relocated to the planet Mustafar, prior to a major battle on the planet. The Council departed, and Grievous was killed by Kenobi in the midst of the battle. Nute Gunray became Head of the Council, and he and the rest of the corporate conglomerates were placed in charge of the Confederacy. The Separatist Council was ultimately betrayed by Sidious, who sent Vader (formerly Skywalker who turned to the dark side and became Sidious's apprentice) to eliminate them for good. It was on Mustafar that the members of the Separatist Council were massacred one by one by the vengeful Sith Lord.


Pre-War and Geonosis

The Separatist Council on Geonosis.

"The Banking Clan will sign your treaty!"
―San Hill[1]

With Count Dooku's political ambition to create a separate galactic body opposite the Galactic Republic, the dominant galactic government of the time, many of the galaxy's largest financial and political benefactors decided to join Dooku's movement under the lure of free trade zones. These included Nute Gunray, Viceroy of the Trade Federation; San Hill, Chairman of the InterGalactic Banking Clan; Passel Argente, the Magistrate of the Corporate Alliance; Tikkes of the Quarren Isolation League; Wat Tambor, the Foreman of the Techno Union; Po Nudo of the Hyper-Communications Cartel; Poggle the Lesser of Geonosian Industries; and Shu Mai of the Commerce Guild. These individuals and several others were summoned to the planet Geonosis, where they would formally join the Separatist movement and organize an army to destroy the Republic. Jedi Knight Obi-Wan Kenobi arrived on Geonosis before being captured and imprisoned, though he discovered Dooku's plot before being apprehended. Jedi Padawan Anakin Skywalker and Senator Padmé Amidala promptly proceeded to Geonosis in an attempt to rescue Kenobi, though were also apprehended by bounty hunter Jango Fett shortly after their arrival.[1]

The Council attended the trial of Amidala and Skywalker shortly before the duo and Master Kenobi were sentenced to death in the Petranaki arena. The Jedi and the Senator managed to survive, however, and were reinforced by approximately 200 Jedi under the leadership of Jedi Master Mace Windu and a large number of clone troopers. This battle started the Clone Wars, sealing the fate of the newly formed Separatist Council and ensuring that their loyalties lay with Dooku.[1]

Councilors during the War

"Droid, is the planet Ryloth one of our targeted worlds?"
"Yes, Emir. Based on resources, accessibility, political influence and overall strategic value, it is currently ranked as number seventy-nine."
"Mobilize our troops. We are moving it to number one."
―Wat Tambor and TA-175[3]

Emir Wat Tambor, on the surface of newly-conquered Ryloth.

Throughout the course of the war, the members of the Council were held on a very loose leash; they were free to do as they pleased—though their numerous plots and escapades proved to be more of a hindrance than a help, at least in Dooku's mind.[source?] Nute Gunray continued to attempt to assassinate Padmé Amidala, with an attempt to persuade Rodia's senator, Onaconda Farr, to give her to Gunray for execution in exchange for food and supplies for Farr's people. The attempt failed, and Gunray was captured by the Republic,[4] though he was rescued shortly after his capture, from the assistance of Dark Acolyte Asajj Ventress and Captain Faro Argyus.[5] Later in the war, Gunray attempted to hold his citadel on Cato Neimoidia.[6]

Council members Wat Tambor and Passel Argente spied on each other, as they both grew to mistrust each other.[7][3] Using Argente's suspiciousness to his own advantage, Tambor knew that Argente would seek out a spy droid to utilize against Tambor from the dealer Gha Nachkt, so Tambor paid Nachkt to sell a spy droid to the Koorivar. As Tambor had predicted, Argente contacted Nachkt, and the Trandoshan dealer dutifully sold Tambor's protocol droid to Argente. Once the Koorivar had the droid, Nachkt contacted Tambor, and the Skakoan transmitted the dealer's reward to him. Tambor tuned into the droid's frequency, allowing the Foreman to directly spy on Argente and track his movements across the galaxy.[7] As Tambor tracked Argente's movements, the Koorivar traveled to the Outer Rim planet Ryloth to meet with Twi'lek broker Artruk, whom Argente had hired to conceal treasures in his possession. Upon noticing the treasures,[3] Tambor ordered his personal T-series tactical droid, TA-175,[8] to move Ryloth to the highest priority for a Confederate invasion.[3] Tambor soon invaded Ryloth, starving and subjugating the Twi'lek population to a harsh rule.[9] After annihilating the Republic fleet defending Ryloth,[10] the Skakoan blockaded Ryloth, placing Captain Mar Tuuk in charge of the Confederate fleet,[9] while Tambor made headquarters for himself in Ryloth's capital city, Lessu.[11] The Republic eventually returned to Ryloth, successfully defeating the blockade,[9] and landing their troops on the surface for an attack on the capital.[12] In a holographic conference with Tambor, Count Dooku, displeased with the Emir's weakening hold on Ryloth, ordered him to salvage what he could of the Twi'lek treasures on the planet and retreat before Windu arrived with his forces in Lessu. Dooku also ordered Tambor to liquidate whatever he could of Ryloth, as the massacre would show the galaxy the "cost" of a Republic victory. To accomplish this, Tambor dispatched a squad of Hyena-class bombers[11]—and, at TA-175's recommendation, an army of ground forces[13]—to begin destroying several Twi'lek villages in the area. However, Windu soon enlisted the help of the Twi'lek leader Cham Syndulla and Ryloth's resistance against the Confederate oppression. Tambor decided to wait for the last of several Multi-Troop Transports hauling the treasures, despite Dooku's order to retreat and bomb Lessu. TA-175, too impatient to wait for his master, departed aboard Tambor's shuttle, and the Skakoan was left stranded just as the Republic forces arrived in the city. Windu cornered Tambor; however, Dooku was intent on eliminating Lessu, even with Tambor's life in jeopardy. The Confederate Head of State ordered TA-175 to continue with the bombers' attack, but the intervention of Skywalker and Tano in their fighters prevented the destruction of Lessu. Tambor surrendered and was taken into Republic custody.[11]

With Geonosis, along with other worlds, secured again for the Separatists,[14] Archduke Poggle the Lesser made a deal with the Trade Federation and the Banking Clan to fund a new factory complex on his homeworld. Poggle was present at a meeting on Cato Neimoidia along with Senators Lott Dod and Rush Clovis. However, Clovis brought with him Senator Amidala, who managed to steal the plans to the new droid foundry and deliver it to the Jedi Council.[15] It wasn't long before the Jedi arrived to shut down the new factories on Geonosis. While Poggle remained inside to oversee production, battle droids and Geonosian warriors defended the ray-shielded factory from an offensive strike led by Jedi Generals Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi, and Ki-Adi-Mundi. During the battle, Poggle's aide TX-21 informed him the factory was operating at 50% capacity and had produced ten garrisons of droid troops. In response to the show of force at the bridge near the factory, Poggle authorized twenty of his new ray-shielded super tanks to be deployed, which forced the Jedi forces to fall back. Meanwhile, inside the catacombs, Ahsoka and Barriss Offee accidentally woke a Geonosian spy, who quickly informed Poggle of their intrusion. While the two Padawans planted explosives in the reactor room, Poggle and TX-21 arrived with a super tank and several Geonosian warriors. Poggle left them to deal with the intruders and the explosives were quickly disable, though TX-21 was destroyed by a detonator placed on the super tank–which remained unharmed.

Councilors San Hill and Shu Mai attempted to hold Muunilinst[16] and Felucia,[17] respectively. Queen Miraj Scintel of Zygerria, however, now a Councilor, abused her position on the Council to make slave trade easier and far more profitable for her organization. She invited fellow Council members Wat Tambor and Shu Mai to a live auction on her homeland and territory, Zygerria, eventually enslaving Jedi Knight Anakin Skywalker. When ordered to kill her new bodyguard, she disobeyed, which led to her death at the hands of Count Dooku.[18]

Bounties were also placed on the Separatist Council member's heads by various high-ranking officials within the Galactic Senate, none of which proved any fruit.[19]

Belderone and Utapau

"What world will accept us now?"
"If none offers, Chairman, then I will take one"
―San Hill and Grievous on finding a new haven[6]

In the final stages of the Clone Wars, the Council was to hide in the Outer Rim on General Grievous's orders, due to Republic victories at Separatist strongholds in the Core and Colonies. Trade Federation Viceroy Nute Gunray traveled to Cato Neimoidia before it fell to purge his citadel of any remaining treasures he "could not live without," before Jedi Knights Anakin Skywalker, Obi-Wan Kenobi and Plo Koon took the system. In his haste to evacuate, Gunray accidentally left his mechno-chair behind—which held vital Separatist information and holo-transmissions regarding the Council's whereabouts. Gunray and his assistant Rune Haako arrived at Grievous's ship, Invisible Hand, to find that Grievous had already uncovered the Neimoidian's fumble.[6]

A quick change of plans was made, and the Council was moved to the planet Utapau. Before Grievous's death, Darth Sidious ordered Grievous to send the Council from Utapau to Mustafar, supposedly to keep them safe from the Republic, as troops led by Jedi Master Obi-Wan Kenobi were soon to storm the sinkhole planet. However, the Council was doomed to die on Mustafar. Grievous briefed the Council on their travel arrangements shortly after Kenobi arrived; Kenobi was, however, able to eavesdrop on Grievous and the Council, though he let the Council members' retreat before challenging Grievous. Clone Commander Cody soon arrived, bringing Republic clone troopers with him, and engaged the battle droid forces. In the midst of the skirmish, Kenobi killed Grievous.[2]

Death of the Council

"The war is over. Lord Sidious promised us peace! We only want—"
―Nute Gunray's last words to Darth Vader — (audio) Listen (file info)[2]

The Separatist Council on Mustafar shortly before their death.

The Council established their makeshift headquarters in the Klegger Corp Mining Facility after being sent to Mustafar by Darth Sidious. Upon Grievous's death at the hands of Obi-Wan Kenobi, the Council assumed direct control of the Confederacy, and began monitoring the Outer Rim Sieges, which they were mostly losing. Sidious then tasked his new Sith apprentice, Darth Vader, with the assassination of all ten Council members, as well as their many aides, after Sidious no longer had any need for the Separatist Movement. Through a hologram, Sidious tells the Separatists that Vader would take care of them, though the Separatists were unaware that Sidious had betrayed them. With Sidious's puppets, the Jedi and the last remaining Separatists dead, Sidious would have little opponents to challenge his rule as Emperor.[2] Vader swiftly traveled to Mustafar, and once inside their hidden command center, was greeted by Gunray and the other council members. Vader trapped the Separatist leaders in their own war room and conference room before murdering the leaders methodically, killing Denaria Kee, Aito Laff, Nudo's aide, Tikkes, Passel Argente, Po Nudo's Shi'ido aide, Cat Miin, Shu Mai, Po Nudo, San Hill, Poggle the Lesser and Aruteous Gunnay in the War Room, and proceeded to the conference room. There, he killed Rune Haako, Wat Tambor, and, finally, Nute Gunray, whom Vader held a grudge with for Gunray's attempts to assassinate his secret wife, Amidala.[2]

The Command Center was later host to a duel between Darth Vader and his former Jedi Master, Obi-Wan Kenobi, where Kenobi saw the Council's bodies and the length of the terror his former pupil had created. With the death of the Council, the Clone Wars officially came to an end, bringing about the age of the Galactic Empire.[2]


For at least two months following the war's end, Palpatine maintained that the council members' final fates were unknown, using the possible threat of their return to justify his military expansion.[source?]

Many of the businesses involved in the Separatist Movement faded into oblivion after their Head's death, while others were forced to turn their assets over to the newly-formed Galactic Empire. The IG Banking Clan, however, survived the incident, though they were much less profitable than they were before the War.[20]


The Separatist Council was the governing body of the Confederacy. It was led by a Head of State-Count Dooku. Should the Head of State be assassinated, the Supreme Commander (General Grievous) would take control. The Council leaders held equal voting power, but should both the Head of State and Supreme Commander be incapacitated, the Council member with the largest economic investment to the war would become acting head—namely, Nute Gunray.[2]

Though the Council members were able to contribute to the war effort in almost any way they pleased, they were required to follow orders given by Count Dooku or Darth Sidious, the Sith conspirators behind the war. Miraj Scintel, slave trader and Queen of Zygerria, was unwilling to follow her superior's orders. She was promptly killed by Count Dooku for her misconduct.[18]


The Council was composed of representatives of Separatist-allied worlds and quasi-government entities. It was chaired by a Head of State.[1]

The members of the Council were as follows:

Republic Senators who joined the Separatist cause:

Other members of power included:



External links

Notes and references

Members of the Separatist Council
Dooku · Grievous · Nute Gunray
Council members
Passel Argente · San Hill · Shu Mai · Po Nudo · Poggle the Lesser · Wat Tambor · Tikkes · Rogwa Wodrata
Sun Fac · Aruteous Gunnay · Rune Haako · Denaria Kee · Cat Miin · Nank Tun