Duterte tells Sison: If talks fail, let’s resume violent war
President Rodrigo Duterte has reiterated his commitment to peace negotiations with communist rebels, but he warned that if the talks fail, it could lead to “violent war.”
Speaking to reporters on Saturday night before he left for South Korea, Duterte said the presence of armed rebels in Mindanao prevents investors from coming in. He cited Davao as an example.
“Hindi muna maka-access doon ngayon kasi magulo (They can’t come in because it’s chaotic.) So we are trying to find out if we can succeed in the talks with the Communist Party,” Duterte said when asked how the Koreans can help the Philippines.
Duterte reiterated his invitation for Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founding chair Jose Maria Sison to return to the country and discuss peace with the government.
But the President said he has not received a “clear” answer from Sison.
“If you come home, I will guarantee your safety and your security. If the talks fail, I’d be glad to escort you here and see you leave the Philippine territory pero sana huwag ka nang bumalik,” Duterte said.
The Commander in Chief expressed hope that the peace negotiations would prosper this time as “we have suffered a lot, resources, lives and all.”
“Pero kung hindi naman, sabihin ko na lang sa iyo na huwag ka nang bumalik (If not, let me just tell you not to go back). Let’s end this by just shaking our hands and we will resume the violent war. It leaves us no other alternative,” he said. /ee
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