Iqbal: Mamasapano incident strengthens MILF trust in PH gov't | Inquirer News
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Iqbal: Mamasapano incident strengthens MILF trust in PH gov’t

/ 07:41 PM February 12, 2015

MANILA, Philippines—The Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) has said it trusted President Benigno Aquino III more than ever despite the Mamasapano incident, which put their peace agreement with the government into question.

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“With the Jan. 25 incident, lalong lumakas ang tiwala namin kay President Benigno Aquino III at sa aming counterparts (our trust in President Aquino and our counterparts has gotten stronger). I hope this is also the case of the government with the MILF,” MILF chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal said on Thursday at a press briefing after the Senate probe.

“Our trust with the President has increased, as well as with our counterparts in the government, because we can see that they are serious (in pursuing peace),” Iqbal said in Filipino.

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MAIN STORY: Iqbal: We trust Aquino, gov’t panel even more to pursue peace talks with MILF

He added that the government had proven it supported the peace process after dealing with them for 17 years and signing plenty of documents in the process.

Members of the Philippine National Police (PNP) Special Action Force targeted two known terrorists Zulkifli bin Hir alias Marwan and Basit Usman in an operation in Maguindanao when it battled with members of the MILF and the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters.

The botched raid led to the deaths of 44 police officers, 18 MILF members and three civilians. It also killed Marwan but Usman escaped.

The government signed a peace deal with the MILF last year and was in the process of creating a Bangsamoro political entity when the Mamasapano clash happened.

The incident has been blamed on the PNP’s lack of coordination with the military and MILF.

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TAGS: Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters, Basit Usman, Benigno Aquino III, Mamasapano, Marwan, Mohagher Iqbal, Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Philippine National Police, Special Action Force, Zulkifli bin Hir
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