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Security in the ‘Periphery’ of post-colonial states: analysing Pakistan’s ‘tribal’ Pashtuns and Kenyan-Somalis

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Pakistan and Kenya, though culturally and geographically different, are two states where certain colonial legacies exist in the state and political sphere, even after independence from their colonial masters. This especially applies when dealing with the ‘peripheral’ groups. In the case of Pakistan, the ‘tribal’ Pashtuns have suffered due to persistence of more than a century old colonial-era legal framework in the form of the Frontier Crimes Regulations (FCR), which was finally repealed in May 2018 after the ‘tribal’ region’s merger with the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province. In the case of Kenya, the Kenyan-Somalis for a long time have had to endure a closed district created by the British colonial administration, special laws, a confrontational relationship with the state and unequal treatment by post-colonial administrations. The essay comparatively discusses both these cases in detail and argues that for peace in Pakistan’s Pashtun ‘tribal’ region, a smooth merger, in its true spirit, with the KP province along with shedding of anti-Pashtun narratives is necessary. Whereas for Kenya, the best opportunity for political and socio-economic integration of Kenyan Somalis is to be found in the framework of the new governance structure contained in the new constitution of Kenya 2010, where executive power has been reduced and significant fiscal and political authority is devolved to county governments.
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Keywords: Kenya; Pakistan; Postcolonialism; colonial legacies; peripheries

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: University of Newcastle, New South Wales, Australia 2: Willy Brandt School of Public Policy of University of Erfurt, Germany

Publication date: July 3, 2020

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