Friendship, Mutual Trust, and Evolution of Regional Peace in the International System: the Case of t
International relations (IR) scholars have been reluctant to engage with the question of friendship in the international system. The predominance of (neo)realism in IR partly explains this. However, in the last sixty years or so, some regions of the world have overcome the security dilemma and states have succeeded in constructing peaceful relationshps based on mutual trust and confidence. Building upon securitisation theory, this paper distinguishes between different perceptions that states may have of their own security, and links them with different types of regional peace. It argues that only positive peace, where mutual trust is present and regional relationships are 'desecuritised', can be compared with friendship. The paper proposes a two-phase process, whereby relationships may move from negative to positive peace, and suggests that different mechanisms are at work in each phase. It examines this model by analysing détente between Argentina and Brazil in the late 1970s, and their determination to build a zone of positive peace in the Southern Cone.