The Post-Colonial Security Dilemma: Timor-Leste and the International Community

The Post-Colonial Security Dilemma: Timor-Leste and the International Community
Date of publication:  2018
Publisher:  ISEAS – Yusof Ishak Institute
Number of pages:  402
Code:  BM562
Soft Cover
ISBN: 9789814818407
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About the publication

This book examines the development of Timor-Leste’s foreign policy since achieving political independence in 2002. It considers the influence of Timor-Leste’s historical experiences with foreign intervention on how the small, new state has pursued security. The book argues that efforts to secure the Timorese state have been motivated by a desire to reduce foreign intervention and dependence upon other actors within the international community. Timor-Leste’s desire for "real" independence — characterized by the absence of foreign interference — permeates all spheres of its international political, cultural and economic relations and foreign policy discourse. Securing the state entails projecting a legitimate identity in the international community to protect and guarantee political recognition of sovereign status, an imperative that gives rise to Timor-Leste’s aspirational foreign policy. The book examines Timor-Leste’s key bilateral and multilateral diplomatic relations, its engagement with the global normative order, and its place within the changing Asia-Pacific region.


  • The Post-Colonial Security Dilemma: Timor-Leste and the International Community
    [Whole Publication, ISBN: 9789814818414], by Rebecca Strating, author
  • Preliminary pages
  • 1. Introduction
  • 2. The Struggle for Recognition: Territorialization, Self-determination and the Imagining of “East Timor”
  • 3. The Politics of Recognition: East Timor and the International Community
  • 4. Establishing Legitimacy: International State-building in East Timor
  • 5. Timor-Leste’s Aspirational Foreign Policy
  • 6. Identity Hedging: Timor-Leste’s Engagement with Intergovernmental Organizations
  • 7. Timor-Leste’s National Security Agenda
  • 8. Securing Economic Sovereignty
  • 9. International Reconciliation and Transitional Justice
  • 10. Conclusion: Timor-Leste in the Changing Regional Order
  • Postscript
  • Bibliography
  • Index
  • About the Author

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