In groups such as United Front for Independent

Inreference to the discussions over Week 11, the primary domestic security conundrumsthat Southeast Asia faces are ethnic politics and religious extremism.As Southeast Asia constitutes a variety of ethnicities and religions, thetensions entailing those differences becomes a sensitive issue. Ethnicminorities become dismissed and restricted from the civil and political rights.Coupled with the construction of the national borders, a legacy of divideand rule principle from colonial times has given a fragile condition forthe politics along the national borders (e.g. conflicts along Preah Vihear Temple,mobilized ethnic tensions etc.

) due to a clash of identities of the ethnic coresand national values as well as rapid social changes, economic marginalization,disparity and culture dislocations (Shu, Week 9).             Considering religions as a politicalissue, Islam separatists such as the Thai Muslims in its threesouthernmost provinces and Moro People in the Philippines become a relevantcase. The former, the Muslim minorities settling along the southern border withMalaysia (an Islamic Majority nation) being part of a nation state where the predominanceof its civic society being constituted by Buddhism and the Monarchy as anintegral part of the regime, conflicts with the rebel groups such as UnitedFront for Independent Pattani grows to be a security issue challengingThailand (Shu, Week 11). From January 2004 to the beginning of 2008, almostdaily violence had taken over three thousand lives (Weatherbee p.41, 2009) andwhen internal conflicts arise, the country loses its capability to contributeto regional development, inducing the regional security to jeopardy.             However, beyond the traditionalthreats to state sovereignty, threats originating from non-state actors againstthe state’s security whose hostile acts affect the way the states interact witheach other in the international system is an issue in the region as well (Weatherbeep.

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169, 2009). Terrorist activities of Jema’ah Islamiyah (JI) or AbuSayyaf Group (ASG) which have links with the borderless organizations such asAl-Qaeda have sparked impulse for radicalized separatist movements acrossthe region. According to Weatherbee (p.172, 2009), at the 2001 ASEAN Summit,the ASEAN heads of government adopted an ASEAN Declaration on Joint Actionto Counter Terrorism as a regional response to the terrorism. They have expressedtheir commitment to combat terrorism through cooperative joint practicalcounterterrorism measures, but in the current world situation where terrorismseems to be more unpredictable, the existing configuration might not sufficethe regional security.


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