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A number of such entities have existed in the past.
There are two traditional doctrines that provide indicia of how a de jure sovereign state comes into being.
Non-recognition is often a result of conflicts with other countries that claim those entities as integral parts of their territory.
In other cases, two or more partially recognised states may claim the same territorial area, with each of them de facto in control of a portion of it (as have been the cases of the Republic of China (Taiwan) and the People's Republic of China (PRC), and North and South Korea).
A total of 56 states, including Germany, The People's Republic of China (PRC), proclaimed in 1949, is the more widely recognised of the two claimant governments of "China", the other being the Republic of China (ROC, also known as Taiwan).
The PRC does not accept diplomatic relations with states that recognise the ROC (19 UN members and the Holy See as of 13 June 2017).
The SADR, which declared its independence in 1976, has been recognised by 84 UN member states and South Ossetia.
39 states, however, have since retracted or suspended recognition, pending the outcome of a referendum on self-determination.
Some states maintain informal (officially non-diplomatic) relations with states that do not officially recognise them.
Proto-states often reference either or both doctrines in order to legitimise their claims to statehood.
There are, for example, entities which meet the declarative criteria (with de facto partial or complete control over their claimed territory, a government and a permanent population), but whose statehood is not recognised by any other states.
A number of polities have declared independence and sought diplomatic recognition from the international community as de jure sovereign states, but have not been universally recognised as such.
These entities often have de facto control of their territory.