Quantcast
Latest Stories

Peace talks have reached stalemate, says MILF negotiator

By

Chief MILF negotiator Mohaqher Iqbal

MANILA, Philippines – The peace talks between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front have reached a deadlock but leaders of the secessionist group are urging their field commanders to be patient to avoid a resurgence of violence in Mindanao.

“It’s a stalemate,” MILF chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal told the Philippine Daily Inquirer Saturday when asked in a telephone interview how he would describe the status of the negotiations.

Iqbal said that MILF leaders were in constant touch with field commanders, “telling them to be patient.”

“There’s no reason to be rash. We’re telling them that we should manage our frustrations. Our hope is that we will be able to prevent that fighting will erupt again,” Iqbal said.

On Friday, MILF vice chairman for political affairs Ghadzali Jaafar said that both the MILF leadership and its ground commanders were already “frustrated” and losing faith in the peace process.

Sought for comment on Iqbal’s statement that the talks had reached a stalemate, government chief negotiator Miriam Coronel-Ferrer told the Inquirer in a text message: “The (Malaysian) facilitator is on board, channels are open in order for us to discuss and settle contentious issues.”

But for Iqbal, the recent exchange of notes between the two peace panels, through Malaysian facilitator Datuk Abdul Ghafar Tengku, did not translate to progress in the talks.

The panels had their last formal round of talks in Kuala Lumpur last April when they signed the terms of reference for the Mindanao socio-development program called Sajahatra Bangsamoro.

“There is an exchange of notes but we don’t see it working. Nothing will happen with the exchange of notes. The government is diluting the initialed wealth sharing annex. It is downgrading (the annex),” Iqbal said.

He said the MILF would not agree to any changes to the annex that government would propose.

Ferrer said that President Benigno Aquino III was only exercising prudence by reviewing the wealth-sharing document, but for Iqbal, what was needed was for the two panels to “focus on what has been initialled.”

“The government is changing its position. How can we be sure that it won’t do the same with the two other annexes (on power-sharing and normalization)?” Iqbal said.

Iqbal warned that “time is running out” for the peace negotiations.

The MILF said that the peace deal with the government must be sealed before the term of President Aquino ends in 2016 and that delaying it beyond that point would jeopardize the chances of lasting peace in Mindanao.

Any delay in the peace talks, the MILF warned, could lead to a resumption of fighting in Mindanao.

The Transition Commission, which will craft the Bangsamoro Law, has been convened but it would need the annexes to the framework agreement for it to be able to put together the proposed legislation that would be submitted to Congress for approval.

The Bangsamoro will replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, which President Aquino has described as a “failed experiment.”


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: MILF , Mindanao Peace Talks , Mindaoa peace process , Mohagher Iqbal




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  3. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  4. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  5. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  6. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  9. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  10. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. MH370 co-pilot made mid-flight phone call – report
  7. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  8. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  9. Massive infra spending set
  10. OFW brings MERS virus to Philippines
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  5. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  6. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  7. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  8. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  9. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
Advertisement

News

  • Gloomy weather on Black Saturday–Pagasa
  • Mixed feelings for Gabriel Garcia Marquez in hometown
  • Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  • Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’–report
  • Pakistan library named ‘bin Laden,’ as memory fades
  • Sports

  • Duke’s Rodney Hood joining Jabari Parker in NBA draft
  • Phelps entered in 3 events at comeback meet
  • Boston prepares for huge wave of marathon visitors
  • Motivated LeBron James preps for postseason
  • Nadal ousted by Ferrer in Monte Carlo quarters
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Barbie doll has a problem
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • OFW from UAE tests negative for MERS-Cov–health chief
  • Multicultural flock marks Good Friday in San Francisco
  • Las Vegas ‘Pinoy Pride’ fest hails Filipino heritage
  • Marking Jesus’ journey on Good Friday
  • Filipina accomplice arrested for fake bills in Malaysia
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement