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This question already has an answer here:

If you're playing a race with the special power "Diplomat" during the first round, are you allowed to declare peace with a player that has not yet entered the game?

marked as duplicate by GendoIkari, ruds, Ken Herbert, doppelgreener, bengoesboom Aug 24 '14 at 4:27

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

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I found an answer to this question in an answer to a similar question:

Q: Is a race with the Diplomat power allowed to nominate a player, who has just declined or who has not yet had a turn (and therefore has no active race) as an ally?

A: Yes indeed, the only restriction in the choice of an ally is that you cannot choose a player if you just attacked his active race.

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Sure. There is nothing in the rules to suggest that the race you choose needs to have units on the board.

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