Norway to continue support for peace process in Bangsamoro — envoy
MANILA, Philippines — The government of Norway will continue supporting the peace process in the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), said Ambassador of Norway Bjorn Jahnsen on Wednesday.
Bjorn made the assurance during his courtesy call on President-elect Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. in Mandaluyong City.
“What we discussed in detail on the peace talks was Norway’s engagement in the Bangsamoro,” Bjorn said in a press briefing.
“Norway is the vice-chair of something called independent decommissioning body charged with decommissioning former combatants… We look forward to continuing our support to bring peace to the Bangsamoro also during the next administration,” he added.
According to Bjorn, around 20,000 former combatants have been decommissioned so far. This is half of their target which is 40,000.
Norway serves as the third-party facilitator in the peace talks between the Philippine government and the communist rebels.
However, incoming national security adviser Clarita Carlos earlier said she is “done with peace talks” with communist rebels, but noted that they should be invited “to be part of change.”
Carlos said the government should not exclude, but rather include communist rebels in pushing for change.