The persistence of armed Muslim separatist rebellion in Southeast Asia is demonstrated by the ongoing rebellions in Aceh and Mindanao. A strong regional identity infused with Islam has been a binding factor in these separatist movements. Their persistence demonstrates the failure of Indonesia and the Philippines in achieving legitimacy for their post-independence political structures as well as continued internal weakness. The prospects for their quick and peaceful resolution are not good. The external dimension of Muslim separatism has heightened mistrust among states in the region and raised apprehensions over the broader issue of Islamic fundamentalism and the implications for the region should Aceh and Mindanao achieve secession.
- Southeast Asia
- counter terrorism