Constructing separatist threats
Security and insecurity in Indonesian Aceh and Papua
in Critical Security in the Asia-Pacific
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Political liberalization allowed people in Aceh and Papua to express long-suppressed grievances and aspirations. Since the end of the Suharto regime in 1998, the 'outlying' provinces of Aceh and Papua have caused great concern to Indonesia's national security planners. This chapter aims to provide an assessment of the Indonesian state's approach to security in these territories. In the midst of the intensely conflict-ridden and securitized political climates found in these territories, there is space for the imagination of alternative conceptions of human security by local communities, as well as room for their application in practice. The internal separatist threat is invariably linked in the security discourse to external threats to Indonesia's sovereignty and territorial integrity. The authority of the regime depended upon the cultivation of a constant state of anxiety and insecurity that 'penetrated profoundly into the everyday activities of ordinary Indonesians'.


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