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PacNet #85 – Building Peace and Security in the Asia-Pacific

It is widely accepted that Asia has become a core world region and is possibly in the making to become the world’s core economic region. Its growing economic importance, however, has not been matched by commensurate development in the political and strategic domains. Political development relates to the making of resilient nations and effective states that are deemed legitimate by their respective populations. Here Asia suffers many weaknesses. In fact most of the domestic and international conflicts in Asia are grounded in the contested nature of existing nations and states. Considering them too sensitive, nonnegotiable, and essentially matters of domestic jurisdiction, Asian countries have generally shied away from directly addressing such political issues. Nevertheless political development is an important issue with potential to hobble Asia’s rise and possibly lead to the unravelling of several countries with dramatic consequences for Asia’s political map.