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Fencing the Line: Analysis of the Recent Rise in Security Measures Along Disputed and Undisputed Boundaries (From Global Surveillance and Policing: Borders, Security, Identity, P 173-193, 2005, Elia Zureik and Mark B. Salter, eds. -- See NCJ-213109)

NCJ Number
John W. Donaldson
Date Published
21 pages
This chapter examines case studies of new boundary security measures introduced at disputed and undisputed national boundaries in order to determine the influence these measures might have on dispute settlement and relations between neighboring countries.
The case studies of disputed territories address the boundary security measures in Kashmir, which involve the countries of India and Pakistan, and the West Bank, which involves a dispute between Israel and Palestine. Case studies of boundary security measures in undisputed areas feature the borders between Botswana and Zimbabwe, Saudi Arabia and Yemen, Bangladesh and India, and Malaysia and Thailand. Regarding the influence of border security measures in disputed territories, the analysis of the two case studies notes that such security measures imposed by one country become problematic when the other country objects to the placement of the border and the use of tight controls. In both the cases cited, Pakistan and Palestine have not acquiesced to the presence of India and Israel, respectively, in territory they believe to be their own. This has also encouraged persistent official and international criticism of the boundary measures imposed by India and Israel. Regarding security measures at undisputed borders, recent unilateral escalations in border security measures have tended to imply that a neighboring state has an internal problem that is not being adequately addressed. In the current climate of increasing measures to counter militants, insurgents, and terrorists, no country wants to be viewed as weak or incapable of maintaining security within its own borders. In addition, increased border security measures may symbolize antagonism between countries where none exists. When security measure are unilateral, the country that prefers an easier crossing of borders may resent the lack of cooperation in setting border-security policies, which may undermine cooperation in other areas. 28 notes and 6 references


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