Sources in Romulan space have confirmed that the reformed Romulan Senate has collapsed and fighting has broken out on multiple former colony worlds.
“It's just as bad as it was before the empress took the throne,” said one anonymous source. “Without Sela to hold everything together, everyone is making a grab for power.”
According to Starfleet Intelligence sources, Empress Sela was last seen aboard her flagship. That vessel, the I.R.W. Leahval, has not been spotted for several weeks. Reports that the ship was “taken” by some sort of alien device are unconfirmed.
From what the Federation News Service has been able to learn, at least three factions of senators are now vying for control of the empire. Fighting has broken out in the streets of Sela's capital on Rator III, and armed bands holding portions of the city as “sovereign territory” for their faction.
It is unclear as of yet which faction will have the support of the military or the Tal Shiar, although a handful of individual ship commanders have declared support for a group headed by Senator Harmien.
“No one faction is going to be able to claim the title of praetor without the support of the military, and I don't see the fleets falling in line behind a senator,” said Anthony Rice, a professor of political science at the University of Alpha Centauri. “What we're looking at here is the final collapse of the Romulan Star Empire as we've known it.”
“I think the Romulans will survive as a species, but there will be definite changes to their political structure,” said a Starfleet officer who spoke with the Federation News Service. “We're limited by the Prime Directive, so we can't get directly involved to stop the fighting. However, if there is a chance to assist the Romulan people without making their decisions for them, I'm sure Starfleet will try to help.”
At least one group of Romulans is calling for a change that doesn't involve violence.
“There are too few Romulans left for us to fight one another,” said D'Tan, a leader of the Reunification movement that has been working for decades to reunite the Romulan and Vulcan species. “What we need to do is reject the culture of secrecy and deception that has defined us for far too long. We need to reach out to our enemies and call them friends. Most importantly, we need to find a new world. Our homeworld is gone. We cannot cling to the memories any longer. We need to find a planet where we can live in peace.”
As more information on this situation becomes available, we’ll be sure to provide it.