1st batch of MILF, police and military 'peacekeepers' under CAB complete training | Inquirer News
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1st batch of MILF, police and military ‘peacekeepers’ under CAB complete training

By: - Correspondent / @inqmindanao
/ 08:46 PM December 08, 2015

SULTAN KUDARAT, Maguindanao, Philippines – The first batch of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebels, who will help track and document private armed groups and other armed groups in rebel-claimed areas, among other concerns, finished training alongside their counterparts from the military and the police here on Sunday.

Initially, 75 MILF rebels have formally joined what are known as Joint Peace and Security Teams (JPST), which also have soldiers and policemen as members, Toks Ebrahim, co-chair of the MILF and government’s joint peace and security committee, said.

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Ebrahim said the peace teams would be deployed in areas the rebel group and the government would later identify.  They will be tasked to help reduce and control loose or undocumented weapons; support the observance of the ceasefire agreement; work on security arrangements for peace process-connected personalities and events; and support dispute resolution initiatives – including those involving local clans.

“The once warring forces are now allies for one purpose and that is to maintain peace and order,” Ebrahim said.

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Retired Maj. Gen. Leo Cresente Ferrer said the 11-day training held here “showed the (increased) cooperation between the government and the MILF.”

Muhammad Nassif, co-chair of the joint committee on normalization, said the training involving MILF rebels and at least 75 policemen and soldiers was part of the processes under the Normalization Annex of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) between the government and the MILF.

Ebrahim said the JPSTs would be be known as “ambassadors of peace” and they “will carry out the mission to restore peace and order so that our people may live in harmony.”

Chief Supt. Diosdado Ramos, chair of the government-MILF joint peace and security committee, expressed optimism that the JPSTs would be able “to keep the security situation on the ground stable particularly in specific areas with high probability of armed conflict.”

“In short, they will be the peacekeepers or security balancer on the ground,” he said.

Ferrer said the JPST training has been remarkable for its focus on team-building.

He said only by camaraderie and fraternity that members of the JPSTs could fulfill their assigned tasks.

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“This kind of training is a great achievement and that, this achievement shall serve as a special tool and weapon in working for peace,” Ebrahim said.

Ustadz Norul-am Abdullah, chair of the MILF’s da’wah and masjid affairs, said to promote peace, those who have trained under the JPST should “never go along with deceivers or those who are on the wrong path that spreads the wrong concept on the value of peace.”  SFM

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TAGS: Armed Forces of the Philippines, armed groups, cab, Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro, Diosdado Ramos, joint committee on normalization of the Philippine government and the MILF, joint peace and security committee of the MILF and the Philippine government, Joint Peace and Security Teams, JPST, Leo Cresente Ferrer, MILF, Military, Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Muhammad Nassif, News, Normalization Annex of the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro, normalization process, Peace agreement, peace process, peacekeeping, peacekeeping teams, Philippine Government, Philippine National Police, Policemen, Private Armed Groups, Private Armies, Regions, soldiers, Toks Ebrahim, Ustadz Norul-am Abdullah
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