Southeast Asia and Oceania: Publications

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  • The Quest for Federalism in Myanmar

    The question of autonomy or self-determination in Myanmar goes back to the country’s pre-independence era. It is an important historical issue which unified and divided the country. The idea of forming a union government that would grant equal status to all citizens brought together different ethnic groups at the Panglong conference in 1947. However, the country’s conflicts remain and efforts are on to address the decades-old problems. One possible solution widely discussed is federalism.

    November 2018

    Security Challenges and the Management of the India–Myanmar Border

    Being highly porous, poorly guarded and located along a remote, underdeveloped, insurgency-prone region and proximate to one of the world’s largest five opium producing areas, the India–Myanmar border is vulnerable to the activities of insurgents and drugs and arms traffickers as well as criminals. Although the Indian government has been alive to the threats that emanate from a poorly guarded India–Myanmar international border, its attention towards the problem has been woefully inadequate.

    November 2018

    Securing Peace? Regime Types and Security Sector Reform in the Patani (Thailand) and Bangsamoro (the Philippines) Peace Processes, 2011–2016

    This article examines how regime types shape security sector reforms, that are integral to the peace processes in Thailand’s Patani and the Philippines’ Mindanao.

    July 2018

    Australia’s Counter-Terrorism Policies Since September 11, 2001: Harmonising National Security, Independent Oversight and Individual Liberties

    Australia has remained insulated from mega terrorist attacks, but post-September 11 its involvement in the war on terror in Afghanistan, Iraq and against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) has brought terrorism into its backyard. In the wake of these emerging threats, particularly home-grown terrorism (HGT), successive governments have introduced changes in the counter-terrorism (CT) laws, and expanded the Criminal Code Act 1995 (Commonwealth-Cth) at the recommendations of the Council of Australian Governments (COAG).

    March 2018

    India in Australia’s Strategic Framing in the Indo–Pacific

    The world is witnessing a geopolitical shift from the North Atlantic to the Indo–Pacific region. US power is in relative decline with a steady build-up of Chinese power, wealth and influence. The last 15–20 years have also seen the rise of India. Against this backdrop, Australia’s reconceptualisation of its strategic frame as the Indo–Pacific widens its geopolitical canvas and elevates India’s importance for multiple Australian interests and objectives.

    March 2018

    Cambodia–Thailand Sovereignty Disputes: Implications for Cambodia’s Strategic Environment and Defence Organization

    This article analyses two security challenges facing the Royal Cambodian Government (RGC) and the Cambodian Defence Organization at the strategic level for the next decade. The first obvious challenge relates to the stalemated territorial dispute along the Cambodia–Thailand border, particularly the question of ownership of the Preah Vihear (called PhraViharn in Thailand) temple and its surrounding area since October 2008.

    March 2017

    Preventive Diplomacy and the Role of Civil Maritime Security Cooperation in Southeast Asia

    Southeast Asia’s international shipping lanes (ISL) are essential to the economic security of the Asia-Pacific region. Maintaining good order at sea serves to protect regional trade and can be achieved through collaboration between civil maritime security agencies (coast guards). Japan and China both have significant coast guard capabilities and diplomatic influence in the region that could be harnessed to promote civil maritime security cooperation with the countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

    January 2017

    Insurgency, Drugs and Small Arms in Myanmar

    The many links between drugs, small arms and insurgency have been widely discussed and addressed by scholars. The literature in particular has convincingly shown how several insurgent groups in Myanmar have used the drug business to finance and sustain their violent movements. Funds generated from drug production and circulation help the insurgent groups to procure arms, and are widely believed to be supporting the protracted nature of these movements.

    January 2017

    Significance of the November 2015 Myanmar Elections

    Aung San Suu Kyi’s National League for Democracy (NLD) won by a landslide majority in the openly contested elections Myanmar held on Sunday, November 8, 2015.The NLD won a convincing majority with 255 seats in the lower house, 135 in the upper house and 496 seats in the state and regional legislatures. This paves the way for election of President of its choice and forming a government. The election had 33.5 million eligible voters (over 18 years) of Myanmar’s 52 million population.

    March 2016

    Diverging Australian and Indian Views on the Indo-Pacific

    Australia has a vital interest in preventing the Indian Ocean Region from becoming an arena of great power rivalry, including between India and China. The 2013 Defence White Paper clearly delineates the Indo-Pacific as an area of supreme importance to Australia. Developing a close strategic partnership with India is an important part of this strategy.

    May 2015

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