Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Ceasefire holding as peace panels step up cooperation

From the Philippine Star (Oct 10): Ceasefire holding as peace panels step up cooperation

The ceasefire between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) is still holding with increasing cooperation from both sides to prevent any conflict, government peace panel chairman Miriam Coronel-Ferrer said yesterday.

Ferrer told the resumption of the 41st formal exploratory talks in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia that the government and MILF ceasefire panels continue to have increased cooperation in preventing untoward incidents and containing criminal activities.

“This alone is good reason for all those concerned about peace in Mindanao, why it is important to pursue this process between the GPH and the MILF: so that this temporary ceasefire becomes permanent, and in becoming permanent, the other, better things become possible; and so that those who continue to take the path of violence will be isolated, and the rest who commit to peace will coalesce to bring about a broad consensus on the way forward,” Ferrer said.

She said the government, MILF peace panels and their negotiating partners in Kuala Lumpur and stakeholders in the peace process will need to work together to finally attain peace.

“We carry a great burden borne out of equally great expectations. We know that it will require a lot of hard work, the appropriate strategies, the effective mechanisms and collaborative approaches, at the soonest possible time,” Ferrer said.

She said it has taken the government and the MILF peace panel a long while to put down in words and phrases the framework agreement annexes because they want to guarantee the integrity of the document.

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