Isko Moreno says to keep an ‘open mind,’ resume peace talks with Reds
LUCENA CITY — If elected, Presidential candidate Manila mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso on Monday said he will keep an “open mind” and will resume postponed peace talks with the communist rebels.
Moreno, speaking in an ambush interview here, cited the formation of Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) after successful negotiations with Moro Islamic Liberation Front.
“If we can do that to BARMM, we can do it to any person also or group of individuals who bear arms against the state,” Moreno said.
Moreno continued: “To any person and group of individuals who struggle and bear arms against the state, while we don’t tolerate that, we must have an open mind, ears, to try to listen to them. And if they are reasonable, why not?”
The Manila chief executive also said that while he is willing to pursue talks with communists “but not at the expense of our state.”
“I hope when they come to the table, they will meet us halfway… I will pursue that, but not at the expense of our state,” Moreno said.
Moreno also thinks that the government could agree with the conditions of those who belong to the “other side”.
“Marami ang mga bagay na maraming mapagkasunduan, at yung mga hinihiling ng nasa kabilang panig ay kaya namang gawin ng gobyerno. Mga social programs and so on and so forth, yun naman ang pinaglalaban nila eh, yung pagkakapantay-pantay, oportunidad, yung batas pinapairal para sa lahat, tingin ko kaya namang gawin yon,” Moreno explained.
(There are so many things we can reach an agreement on, and the demands of the other side could be fulfilled by the government. Social programs, and so on and so forth, that’s what they are fighting for, opportunity, and equal implementation of the law, I think we can do that.)
Moreno was a government peace panel member during the peace talk negotiations between the government and the National Democratic Front.
President Rodrigo Duterte formally terminated peace talks with the communist rebels in 2017.
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