Border diplomacy and territorial disputes in the IGAD Region: a case study of Kenya
Ndirangu, Josphat Gitonga
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Territorial disputes have serious ramifications on the national security of the State especially when not effectively addressed. Africa and the Horn of Africa are prone to border related conflicts owing to the colonial borders that were inherited upon independence and which do not reflect the ethnic and religious diversities that existed prior to colonization. This study investigated territorial threats in the Inter-Governmental Authority on Development region with special focus on Kenya. It also focused on specific border threats and how Kenya policy makers have responded to the threats using border diplomacy as the focal point. The study used a conceptual of analysis in order meet its goals and objectives. The study aimed at establishing if border diplomacy has been fully utilised to resolve existing territorial disputes that have faced Kenya. In doing so, both primary and secondary data was collected in the research. Interviews were conducted to gather primary data from key stakeholders in the field of border diplomacy and national security. Data collected was analysed using framework analysis. The study found out that territorial disputes present great security challenges to the national security of Kenya. These disputes are largely triggered by the trans-boundary resources with the underlying cause being the colonial legacy of borders drawing. Largely, Kenya has employed a mix of hard and soft approaches when dealing with territorial disputes. However, it was established that the country has not been aggressive enough in using diplomacy to resolve the current territorial disputes with Somalia and Uganda. The study recommends aggressive application of border diplomacy by Kenya in order to effectively address the territorial disputes that faces the country.