Younger military officers ‘more open’ to peace talks
President Duterte’s move to reopen peace negotiations with communist rebels might have offended some members of the military but that does not mean that the whole institution is against it, according to the former head of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New People’s Army, Benito Tiamzon.
Tiamzon, who was recently released from detention to join peace talks between the government and the communist rebels in Oslo, Norway, said they have met military and police officials who welcomed the resumption of the negotiations.
“May mga nagsasabi na generally sa younger officers mas bukas (sa peace talks) dahil tingin nila dead end na yung dating approach (There are those who say that younger officers are generally more open to peace talks because they believe that the old approach is a dead end),” Tiamzon said during an INQ&A interview on Tuesday.
His wife Wilma Tiamzon claimed the military approach has not adequately addressed the root cause of the people’s problems.
The Tiamzons, who both attended the initial round of Oslo talks as National Democratic Front consultants and returned early this month, said they remained optimistic on peace prospects. They will also be joining the second round of negotiations in Oslo early next month. They are both leading working groups in charge of crafting agreements on political and constitutional reforms, and the end of hostilities.
“Mukhang hindi talaga military solution ang talagang dapat na gawin para harapin ang problema na armadong paglaban (It seems like the military solution cannot solve the problem of armed struggle),” she said.
Both the Philippine government and the CPP, which has been waging the longest-running communist insurgency in Asia, have declared unilateral ceasefires in recognition of the ongoing peace talks.
The temporary release of the Tiamzons from detention were among the concessions of the Duterte government.
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