The Cardassians and Romulans both have a frosty relationship with the Federation (and, by extension, any Federation allies, such as the Klingons). How do they relate to one another (TNG era)?

Since they each keep to themselves for the most part, do they also maintain this distance regarding one another? Obviously each is aware of the other's existence. Besides "The Chase," I can't think of any TNG episode in which Romulans and Cardassians are featured, and even in that episode, there wasn't any opining by one group about the other (as far as I can remember).

Is there anything in canon that speaks to this?

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    Does "TNG era" include DS9? Jan 5, 2017 at 4:39
  • Up to the Dominion War business. I am interested in "only TNG" also, if there is anything definitive for this. Jan 5, 2017 at 5:04
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    They appear to have little or no common interests along with a great deal of physical separation; vignette1.wikia.nocookie.net/trek-initiative/images/5/5b/…
    – Valorum
    Jan 5, 2017 at 7:22
  • @Valorum, please note that these maps are a 2D representation of the 3D space, there is such thing as Cardassian-Romulan border. Jan 5, 2017 at 9:12
  • @EdmundDates - Indeed, but this was mid-war when the Federation had (presumably) lost significant amounts of territory. All other canon sources indicate that the Cardassian and Romulans don't share a common border. They aren't even near to each other.
    – Valorum
    Jan 5, 2017 at 9:38

1 Answer 1


They have at least maintained diplomatic relationships

In DS9: Broken Link Garak states that:

GARAK: Ah, yes. The assassination of Proconsul Merrok of Romulus. Such a tragedy. I met him once, a few weeks before he died. I was working as a gardener at the Cardassian embassy during the [missing part].

ODO: You were a gardener on Romulus?
GARAK: My specialty was Edosian orchids. Beautiful but highly toxic.
ODO: As I recall, Proconsul Merrok was poisoned.
GARAK: Funny, I don't remember that. But then again, so many Romulan dignitaries died unexpectedly that year.

From this quote, we can conclude that Romulans maintained more formal relations with Cardassians than with the Federation (with which Romulans haven't any contact between 2311 and 2364). There was most likely a Cardassian Embassy on Romulus, as neither Odo, nor Dr Bashir, who was also present, are not surprised by this fact. We might read between the lines that Obsidian Order may have been responsible for the assassinations on Romulus . This may suggest that they were not allied, and only maintained diplomatic relations.

I will exclude the Tal-Shiar/Obsidian order conspiracy and cooperation, as it was not an official arrangement between the governments, and, although not the part of the Dominion War itself (depending on the definition), it was definitely a prelude to war and will not satisfy the limitations of the question.

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    The subtext is that Garak was over there assassinating people for the Obsidian Order. There's no reason to doubt that there existed an embassy.
    – OrangeDog
    Jan 5, 2017 at 13:46
  • Well, i have edited it a few times, and lost the relation between Garak semi-truths and the assassinations Jan 5, 2017 at 13:48

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