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AFP welcomes Duterte plan to form new peace panel

/ 04:26 PM April 15, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The Armed Forces of the Philippines has welcomed President Rodrigo Duterte’s idea to form a new peace panel to negotiate with communist rebels.

The President said he had dismantled the old peace panel because it took them a long time to talk with the communists. He said the new panel would mostly come from the military.

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AFP public affairs chief Col. Noel Detoyato said Monday that they welcome “all efforts of the government towards attainment of the peace we have always been longing for.”

“Fifty years of deception, lies, exploitation of the IP and extortion is enough. We are prepared to offer not only the hand of peace the whole arm if need be,” he added.

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The government has been pushing for localized peace talks to approach the communist rebels.

Communist Party of the Philippines founder Jose Maria Sison said that the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, the negotiating arm of CPP, does not want to be baited into accepting a “war panel” for the peace talks.

“The NDF would not want to be baited into accepting a war panel, or a panel that is dominated by the military whose purpose is mainly to seek the impossible such as the surrender of the revolutionary forces especially the New People’s Army,” he said.

Sison also said that Duterte cannot dictate the terms of the negotiations.

But Detoyato said that Sison “must also accept the fact that there are many roads towards peace but the road he has taken is not one of them.”

“Mr. Sison has to show sanity and coherence…Let’s go local. Let’s help each other here. In the Philippines. The problem is here. Not in the Netherlands,” he said. /je

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TAGS: AFP, Armed Forces of the Philippines, communist rebel, duterte, latest news, Peace panel
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