Saturday, September 29, 2012

From the MILF Website (Sep 30): $1.4-T Muslim funds with shariah-compliant stocks endorsed

The head of a militant Bangsamoro youth organization has endorsed the plan of the Philippine Stock Exchange (PSE) in putting up $1.4 trillion in investible funds by offering Shariah-compliants stocks to 1.5 billion Muslims worldwide.  “This is a good idea and is long overdue.” This was the statement of Arsad Solaiman, chair of the Youth for Genuine Bangsamoro Empowerment (YBGE), sent to Luwaran today....
From Free the Bangsamoro Movement Blog (Sep 28): Statement: Indignation will continue until President Aquino blocks blasphemy on YouTube

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Muslim indignation over the blasphemous film, “Innocence of Muslims”, will continue and gain momentum unless President Benigno S. Aquino III blocks this vicious attack on the Holy Prophet of Islam (saw) on YouTube. This indignation will not cease and will express itself in many ways, hopefully not through means that might go beyond the parameters of peaceful and legal remonstrance.But continue it will, until the national government realizes that blocking this blasphemous film is the most just and practical way to defuse Muslim indignation and maintain peace....

Signed this 28 of September 2012 at Mendiola, Manila, PH.


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From the Manila Bulletin (Sep 29): Luga Now SOLCOM’s New Chief

The Southern Luzon Command (SOLCOM) has new commanding general in the person of Maj. Gen. Alan Luga. He was formally installed last Friday by Armed Forces Chief of Staff Gen. Jessie Dellosa, replacing Maj. Gen. Eduardo del Rosario in acting capacity. Luga pledged that he will work within the framework of “bayanihan” while strengthening the alliances to different stakeholders and civil society groups in the Southern Tagalog and Bicol regions.
From the Manila Bulletin (Sep 29): Escalante Set To Become Insurgency-Free

The city of Escalante in Negros Occidental province is poised to become insurgency-free very soon.
Major General Jose Mabanta Jr., commander of the Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division (3ID), disclosed at the culmination of National Peace Consciousness Month that role of the head of the local government unit (LGU) is all-important in any LGU’s will to break free from communist insurgency.... “The support of Escalante City towards peace initiatives will definitely contribute to the overall effort of Negros Occidental in the province’s five-year Peace and Development Project for communities affected by armed conflict,” Mabanta emphasized.
Editorial from the Manila Times (Sep 30): Thank you, Muslim Filipino brothers

UNLIKE those Muslims in the Middle East who allowed themselves to run wild with unjust anger at the United States and Americans for the despicable film “The Innocence of Muslims,” our Muslim fellow Filipinos have been the epitome of moderation. This is something the whole Filipino nation should be thankful for.... Unjust is what many Muslims abroad have become in their reaction to the evil and blasphemous film “The Innocence of Muslims.” But not our Filipino compatriots. In obeying the call of their religious leaders, their Ulama, they have decided not to cast off the peace and harmony that being a Muslim means.
Editorial from the Manila Times (Sep 30): The Moderate Muslims of the Philippines

It’s such a great source of consolation and pride for us to be reminded in this issue’s special report that there was a Filipino Muslim leader named Taha Basman. He was the chairman of the Philippine Islamic Council and Center for Moderate Muslims (CMM). He always championed peace and harmony among Christians and Muslims and condemned the war in Mindanao. He said, “Violence would lead mankind nowhere.”
From the Manila Times (Sep 30): Why Muslim Filipinos stay calm

....Aleem Said Ahmad Basher, who has the distinction of being one of the few Muslim Filipinos who have graduated from Al Azhar University in Cairo, Egypt, told this writer the biggest single reason why here in the Philippines there has been no outbreak of violence related to the anti-Islam movie “The Innocence of Muslims.” He said this reason is the different character of the Muslim Filipinos in comparison to their brethren in the Middle East....“There are more moderate Muslims [than extremists] in the Philippines and most of all there are many Muslim Filipinos who are Islamic-minded people,” Aleem Basher said. He stressed that “Islamic-minded” means peaceable. “Contrary to the perception, Muslim Filipinos are actually peace-minded people and they are not trouble makers but peacemakers and that is in accordance with the teachings of Islam,” he emphasized. Aleem Basher, who is also the chairman of the Imam Council of the Philippines, Inc. (ICPI), is one of the most influential clerics and imams who issued calls over national television and major radio stations in Manila against holding anti-US demonstrations in reaction to the outrageous film. He made the call because of it was perceived that radical infiltrators might join the demonstrators and ignite trouble.
From the Philippine Daily Inquirer (Sep 30): ‘Nothing will stop ARMM polls'

Next year’s elections in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) will push through despite the call of a ranking Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) official to have them deferred, a government official said on Saturday. Rosalie Romero, Assistant Secretary of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, said the May elections scheduled along with the nationwide midterm polls would proceed despite the call of Ghadzali Jaafar, MILF political affairs chief, to have them postponed until after the peace talks between the government and the MILF shall have been concluded.  “There will be no postponement. As far as we know, it was just Ghadzali Jaafar and not the MILF which issued the call,” Romero said.
From the Philippine Star (Sep 30): Probe sought on illegal titling of military lands

The Western Command (Wescom) is seeking an investigation into the alleged conversion of lands in military reservations in Puerto Princesa City, Palawan. “I am calling for a full-blown investigation and prosecution of individuals engaged in these land-grabbing activities,” said Lt. Gen. Juancho Sabban, Wescom commander, on the sidelines of the reception of a new Marine brigade in Puerto Princesa City on Thursday. Sabban also challenged his detractors to produce any proof that he was party to the irregularity....
From InterAksyon (Sep 29): No imminent threat against Americans in Metro Manila - PNP

The Philippine National Police (PNP) on Saturday said it has not monitored any imminent threat in Metro Manila, despite a warning released by the United States embassy to its citizens here.
National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) director Chief Supt. Leonardo Espina said the US embassy warning was based on its own assessment and "we have not monitored any imminent threat" at the moment.... Nevertheless, the PNP has directed Metro Manila police to intensify security and intelligence efforts and to coordinate closely with the US embassy on the matter.
From the Daily Zamboanga Times (Sep 29): MNLF leader to campaign for peace, solidarity of Cotabato City residents

The Moro National Liberation Front will focus its campaign for its favored candidate for various elective posts in Cotabato City on the need for Muslim-Christian solidarity in pushing forward the government’s separate peace overture with the MNLF and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). The chairman of the MNLF’s largest and most politically-active group, Cotabato City Vice-Mayor Muslimin Sema, said the strategy will help promote public consciousness on the importance of the Mindanao peace process to the economic and political growth of Cotabato City and surrounding provinces in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. Sema is to aspire for mayor of Cotabato City in next year’s elections....
From the Zamboanga Today (Sep 29): New US Embassy Deputy Chief of Mission visits Mindanao

Brian L. Goldbeck, the new Deputy Chief of Mission (DCM) at the U.S. Embassy in Manila, paid a visit to Mindanao this week to visit U.S.-Philippine initiatives and projects and meet with a number of individuals and groups, including political and community leaders, students, and representatives of civil society organizations.... On September 28, Mr. Goldbeck and Zamboanga City Mayor Celso Lobregat led U.S. and local officials in a ribbon-cutting ceremony at the inauguration of the Upper Pasonanca Suspension Footbridge in Sitio Murok, Barangay Pasonanca. The project is one of over 380 U.S. Government infrastructure projects in the Zamboanga Peninsula....
From the Zamboanga Today (Sep 29): ARMM officials fully behind peace talks with the MILF, says Hataman

Officials of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) are squarely behind the efforts of the Aquino administration to forge a “framework peace agreement” with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) before the end of the year, ARMM Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman assured. Speaking before a general assembly in the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) in Pasig City, Hataman said the ARMM officials who were appointed by President Aquino were prepared to fully support the establishment of the proposed new autonomous political entity (NPE) that was being envisioned in the peace negotiations with the MILF.....
From the Philippine Information Agency (Sep 28): OPAPP to build two FMR in Eastern Samar

The Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP), is set to construct two farm-to-market roads (FMRs) here, in cooperation with its partner government line agencies and local government units (LGUs).... Bonifacio said that the road project will be implemented under OPAPP’s Payapa at Masaganang Pamayanan (Pamana) projects that are scheduled to be implemented in Eastern Samar this year.... The Pamana Program is a peace and development initiative of the national government, in partnership with national and local institutions. It aims to reduce poverty and vulnerability of conflict-affected areas, empower communities, and improve local governance.
From the Philippine Information Agency (Sep 29): Zero human rights violations key in getting people support – Army

Zero human rights violation has helped the soldiers in easily winning the confidence of residents in the countryside to work together in the peace and development outreach program of government. Speaking at the “Arena Forum,” a public affairs program of the Association of Regional Executives of National Agencies aired at radio station DXRA, Lt. Col. Lyndon Paniza, chief of the Public Affairs Office of the 10th Infantry Division (10th ID), cited the zero human rights record of the 10th ID from September 2010 up to the present as one factor which makes residents friendly and helpful to the soldiers, especially in ventilating the issues and finding solutions to problems affecting the community. Paniza said the reorientation of the soldiers from warriors to diplomats helps them interact effectively with the people.
From the Philippine News Agency (Sep 29): Palace says PNP augments security to protect foreign nationals in Metro Manila

In a radio interview over dzRB Radyo ng Bayan, Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) has already beef up security in Metro Manila to ensure peace and security amid protest actions by Muslims against a controversial film. “We spoke with General Espina of the NCRPO yesterday and security has been augmented kahapon pa. So, bago pa lumabas ‘yung balitang ‘yan nag-augment na ng security ang NCRPO particularly to the US facility along Roxas Boulevard,” Valte said. “As a matter of precaution we have already augmented security.”
From the Sun Star (Sep 29): UK, Australia warn citizens of 'possible' terror attacks in Metro Manila

At least three more countries warned their nationals in the Philippines against a possible terrorist attack after the United States Embassy cited on Friday a security threat in Metro Manila.
The United Kingdom, Australia, and Canada cautioned their citizens with the first two countries placing their warnings under the "terrorism" category. "Any attack could be indiscriminate and we advise British nationals to exercise particular caution and extra vigilance in places frequented by expatriates and foreign nationals," the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office said in its travel advice. "There is a high threat from terrorism. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places frequented by expatriates and foreign travelers," it added.
From the pro-CPP Bulatlat (Sep 29):  Tribe leaders, members risk arrest on trumped-up charges

The Philippine National Police (PNP) is using the legal system to harass leaders of an indigenous people’s organization in Surigao del Sur. According to a report from the Rural Missionaries of the Philippines (RMP) in the Northern Mindanao Region (NMR), 37 indigenous members and leaders of the Manobo indigenous people’s organization Maluhutayong Pakigbisog Alang Sumusunod (Mapasu or Persevering Struggle for the Next Generation) have been slapped with charges of rebellion, frustrated murder, arson, illegal possession of firearms and explosives and malicious mischief in two criminal cases based on complaints filed by elements of the PNP. The PNP have charged the 37 with involvement in an attack made by the New People’s Army (NPA) on the Lianga Police Station on April 29, 2011.
From the Philippine Information Agency (Sep 29):  New army chief plead for vigilance vs rebel group’s threats, extortion

The new commander of the 403rd Infantry “Peacemaker” Brigade has appealed for vigilance and public cooperation against threats and extortion activities of rebels in Bukidnon. Col. James V. Jacob reported in a Provincial Peace and Order Council Meeting that some 50 armed men of the New People’s Army (NPA) under Guerilla Front 53 flagged down and burned five prime mover trucks loaded with bananas at the national road in Barangay Puntian, Quezon in Bukidnon last June.