Relations among the ASEAN states

bilateral tensions and the prospects for a security community

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In spite of the assumption of the existence of a security community in Southeast Asia, tensions and mutual suspicions have affected relations among the ASEAN states since the creation of the organisation in 1967. Historical, religious and ethnic animosities as well as territorial disputes severely limits the possibilities for cooperation. The essay suggests that discord in the region poses a significant constraint on the development of a Southeast Asian security community, and consequently on ASEAN's ability to manage collectively a regional order. Based on a detailed analysis of the relationship between the individual members, the essay contends that bilateral relations within ASEAN are so wrought with deep‐seated and contentious issues of territory that interstate conflict cannot in fact be ruled out.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)299-319
Number of pages21
JournalCambridge Review of International Affairs
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2000
Externally publishedYes


  • bilateral tensions
  • interstate relations
  • prospects
  • security community
  • diplomacy

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