GMA News Online
News
»
Nation

Aquino ready to talk peace with MILF, CPP-NPA-NDF

July 26, 2010 5:16pm

President Benigno Simeon "Noynoy" Aquino III declared in his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on Monday his willingness to talk peace with Moro secessionist rebels and communist insurgents.

He said the government is prepared to undertake ceasefire. "Handa po kami sa malawakang tigil-putukan. Mag-usap tayo (We’re prepared for a ceasefire. Let’s talk)

"Mahirap magsimula ang usapan habang mayroon pang amoy ng pulbura sa hangin (It’s difficult to talk peace while the smell of gunpowder is in the air)," he added.

"Dalawa ang hinaharap nating suliranin sa usapin ng kapayapaan: ang situwasyon sa Mindanao, at ang patuloy na pag-aaklas ng CPP-NPA-NDF (We are facing two issues when it comes to peace talks: the situation in Mindanao and the continuing rebellion of the CPP-NPA-NDF [the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front])," Aquino said.

Aquino said that peace talks with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) will begin after the Ramadan, which will begin on August 11 and end on September 9.

"Kinikilala natin ang mga hakbang na ginagawa ng MILF sa pamamagitan ng pagdidisplina sa kanilang hanay. Inaasahan natin na muling magsisimula ang negosasyon pagkatapos ng Ramadan (We acknowledge the steps made by the MILF by disciplining their ranks. We hope to restart peace talks with them after the Ramadan)," Aquino said.

He said peace in Mindanao can only happen when the sectors concerned — the Moros, Lumads (indigenous people), and Christians work together.

"Mararating lamang ang kapayapaan at katahimikan kung mag-uusap ang lahat ng apektado: Moro, Lumad, at Kristiyano. (We can only achieve peace and harmony when the affected groups sit down and talk— the Moros, Lumads, and Christians)," he said.

"Inatasan na natin si Dean Marvic Leonen na mangasiwa sa ginagawa nating pakikipag-usap sa MILF (We have already assigned Dean Marvic Leonen to facilitate the talks with the MILF)," he said, referring to the dean of the University of the Philippines College of Law.

Promptly, Mohagher Iqbal, chair of the MILF information committee, said: "The only thing that I can do is to appreciate the statement as a positive statement but the problem really is how to put that statement when it comes to concretizing it, because theory and practice are sometimes very wide apart, it can be very good as a statement but when it comes to concrete efforts, there lies the problem."

Govt ready for ceasefire with Reds

As for the CPP-NPA-NDF, Aquino challenged the mainstream communist movement to draw concrete suggestions to achieve peace instead of merely criticizing the government.

"Tungkol naman po sa CPP-NPA-NDF: handa na ba kayong maglaan ng kongkretong mungkahi, sa halip na pawang batikos lamang? (About the CPP-NPA-NDF: are you ready to set forth concrete suggestions instead of merely throwing criticisms?)," Aquino asked.

"Nananawagan ako: huwag po natin hayaang masayang ang napakagandang pagkakataong ito upang magtipon sa ilalim ng iisang adhikain (Let’s not waste this good opportunity to work together under one objective)," he said.

"Kapayapaan at katahimikan po ang pundasyon ng kaunlaran. Habang nagpapatuloy ang barilan, patuloy din ang pagkakagapos natin sa kahirapan "Peace and harmony are the foundation of progress. As long as gunfights continue, we will persist in our poverty," he added.

In 1986, the administration of Noynoy's mother, the late Corazon Aquino, declared a 60-day ceasefire with the CPP-NPA. The talks, however, bogged down in 1987. Talks were resumed during the Ramos, Estrada and Arroyo administrations.

But in August 2004, the NDF withdrew from the negotiations, accusing the government of not exerting efforts in convincing the US and other western allies of removing the CPP-NPA-NDF from their list of terrorist organizations. Veronica Pulumbarit/RSJ, GMANews.TV
Go to comments




We welcome healthy discussions and friendly debate! Please click Flag to alert us of a comment that may be abusive or threatening. Read our full comment policy here.
Comments Powered by Disqus