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500 MILF members to attend Bangsamoro accord signing at Palace

/ 03:33 PM March 25, 2014

PRESIDENT Aquino, in an unprecedented move, meets with leaders of the MILF in Tokyo in August, paving the way for the peace talks to move at a much faster pace. FILE PHOTO FROM OPAPP

MANILA, Philippines – Around 500 members of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) will troop to Malacañang on March 27 to witness the historic signing of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB), the Philippine government said Tuesday.

Secretary Teresita Quintos Deles, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, said a total of 1,000 people will attend the signing of the CAB, which will integrate all major agreements signed by the Philippine government and the MILF in the last 17 years.

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The Department of Foreign Affairs also confirmed the attendance of Prime Minister Najib Razak of Malaysia, the third party facilitator of the peace talks.

President Benigno Aquino III, Deles and MILF chief Al Haj Murad Ebrahim will deliver speeches during the ceremony.

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“We are now finalizing the preparations for the signing, which will be at 4:00 p.m. on the Malacañang grounds to be witnessed by many people who have been involved in the peace process, as well as stakeholders, representatives of stakeholders not just in the Bangsamoro but all over the country, as well as the friends of the peace process from abroad,” Deles said in a Palace press briefing.

GPH Peace Panel chair Miriam Coronel Ferrer said the five-page, 12-point text document will include pertinent details on the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro, its four succeeding annexes, the ceasefire agreement of 1997, the agreement on peace signed in Tripoli in 2001 and the 2010 declaration of continuity of negotiations.

“The CAB text to be signed will reiterate the principles of the negotiation namely recognition of the justness and legitimacy of the cause of the Bangsamoro people; their aspiration for a meaningful autonomy through a democratic process; the aim of finding a solution to the Bangsamoro question with honor, justice, and dignity; the aim to end the fighting between the government and the MILF and promote peace and stability,” Ferrer said.

Members of both the GPH and the MILF panel will sign the document.

Ferrer said the CAB is the Philippines’ “global contribution to the pursuit of peace.”

“Many other countries [that] face similar troubles are looking up to us to show the way or possible modalities by which they can also address their own domestic conflicts. Our experience, our mechanisms, our approaches have become a rich source of inspiration to these countries that remain challenged by different sources of domestic hostility,” she said.

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TAGS: Bangsamoro, Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro, MILF, Nation, News, Peace Talks
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