POST 9/11 SECURITY SCENARIO IN SOUTH ASIA: OPTIONS FOR SECURITY OF SMALL STATES WITH SPECIAL REFERENCE TO BANGLADESH
Keywords:9/11 SECURITY SCENARIO
No part of the world has been more affected by the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001 than South Asia. South Asia had to endure the strain and consequences of the war to such an extent that few of the nations of the region are labeled as ‘Failed State’ due to internal instability and dysfunctional governance. Due to the historical background, the regional security of South Asia has always been complex with many inter-state and intra-state problems emanating from diverse range of issues. Although they share the legacies of same colonial era, yet their co-existence is marked more by distrust, confrontation than by cooperation. Consequently, South Asia has become a nuclear concentration area making the region further unsafe. Post 9/11 had a huge impact on the South Asian nations. Religious extremism has spread all across the continuum. Afghanistan and Pakistan are the worst victims; due to ideological affinity and trans-border connectivity, religious extremists have set up a strong network across Afghanistan-Pakistan India-Bangladesh-Myanmar making regional security more volatile. To come out of these menace, South Asia has to develop a South Asian Security Architecture in line with ASEAN Defence Ministers Meeting, a high level defence consultative and cooperative mechanism to promote mutual trust and confidence to greater understanding of defence and South Asian security challenges. SAARC charter should be reviewed to utilize it as multilateral platform to resolve all its contentious issues related to security and explore economic opportunities for poverty alleviation, peace and development of South Asia. Since 9/11, few extremist groups in Bangladesh are engaged in terrorists’ activities defaming Bangladesh in the international community. Bangladesh being the most populous country of the world already plagued with number of NTS threats. It needs to adopt a holistic and well-integrated approach to secure its ever vulnerable national security. Combining all elements of national power, government has to develop a comprehensive security plan with a higher security management platform to counter multi-dimensional threats. Political stability, good governance, rule of law, economic development, employment generating education system, strong foreign policy with economic diplomacy, progressive bilateral approach with India and Myanmar and a credible defence are essential for the national security and development of Bangladesh.
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