No peace talks yet, Reds ‘spoilers of peace’ – Palace
Calling them “spoilers of peace,” Malacañang said there is no enabling environment yet to resume peace talks with communist rebels.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque issued the statement on Tuesday after 61 lawmakers have signed House Resolution No. 1803, calling for the resumption of peace talks with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA).
While Malacañang thanked those who signed the resolution, Roque said the communist rebels have not been sincere in talking peace.
“Right from the very beginning of his term, the President’s position has always been clear and consistent: He remains committed to peace. However, we find it unfortunate that the communists have become spoilers of peace because of their penchant for double talk and treachery,” he said in a statement.
“Their motives are not for attaining sustainable peace but rather to push for their greater control and influence,” he added.
The Palace official reiterated that “there must be an enabling environment that must be present for the desired resumption of peace talks such as genuine sincerity on the part of the CPP-NPA-NDF.”
“They must cease their hostilities against innocent civilians and government forces; end their extortion activities, violent streaks and wanton killings; lay down their arms and return to the fold of law and restart to live normal lives,” he said.
Even without the peace talks, he said “the government’s efforts at forging peace with communist rebels have been gaining ground, as evidenced by the surrender of NPA fighters.”
“Rest assured that the government will exhaust any and all means to achieve lasting peace towards unity and progress,” he said.
President Rodrigo Duterte had earlier hosted “merienda”(snacks) for hundreds of rebel returnees in Malacañang. /muf
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