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MILF chair hopeful BBL will pass to prevent extremism in region

/ 01:47 PM January 25, 2018
Chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Al Haj Murad Ebrahim talks to The Associated Press in Makati city east of Manila, Philippines, late Tuesday, July 18, 2017. Murad said the Islamic State-linked militants wanted his group to broker their possible withdrawal from Marawi city during the major military offensive against them but he refused to intervene. (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

Chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Al Haj Murad Ebrahim (AP Photo/Bullit Marquez)

COTABATO CITY–The chairman of the southern Philippines’ Islamist group, Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) expressed strong hope that the passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) would not be halted and lead to another resurgence of violent extremism in the region.

In a press conference before the beginning of the BBL public hearing in Cotabato City, MILF Chair Al-Haj Murad Ebrahim said that when peace agreements were called off in the past, resurgence of armed uprising happened, just like when the failure of the 1996 peace agreement saw the resurgence of the Abu Sayyaf group.

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Now that they remain optimistic that the BBL version of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) would prosper at the Congress, Ebrahim said the next step in order to assure its passage would be to get the support of the Bangsamoro people.

“The only solution to this ay makuha natin ang (is to get the) support ng (of the) majority of the people, a political solution that is accepted and supported by the people,” he said.

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The MILF leader even cited that this is the first time that the BBL is being supported by majority of their people.

“And they are all for peace. Kaya sa amin hopefully hindi na maulit yung di napasa ang (We hope that there won’t be a repeat of the failure to pass) BBL or we will be facing a very difficult path,” he said.

Senators Juan Miguel Zubiri — who chairs the Senate subcommittee on BBL — Sonny Angara, JV Ejercito and Risa Hontiveros are poised to attend the hearing at the Office of the Regional Governor (ORG) Compound.

The draft BBL, which seeks to establish a new autonomous Muslim region in Mindanao, was part of the 2014 peace accord between the government and the MILF. /je

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TAGS: al haj murad ebrahim, Bangsamoro, BBL, Extremism, law, MILF chair, Mindanao, peace, Violence
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