The incoming government peace panel and the Communist Party of the Philippines/National Democratic Front of the
(CPP/NDFP) have sealed
the agenda to start the formal peace talks by the third week of July. Philippines
In the Joint Communiqué signed by the members of the incoming GPH panel and CPP/NDFP team during their two-day meeting in Oslo, Norway on June 14 and 15, they agreed to recommend to President-elect Rodrigo Duterte the immediate release of NDFP consultants and other Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG) protected persons in accordance with the JASIG to enable them to participate in the peace negotiations; and the immediate release of prisoners/detainees based on humanitarian grounds.
During the resumption of the formal talks they will discuss the affirmation of previously signed agreements; accelerated process for negotiations, including the timeline for the completion of the remaining substantive agenda for the talks, socio-economic reforms, political and constitutional reforms, and end of hostilities and disposition of forces; reconstitution of the (JASIG) list; Amnesty Proclamation for the release of all detained political prisoners subject to concurrence by Congress; and the Mode of Interim ceasefire.
The Joint Communiqué was signed by members of the incoming GPH panel composed of Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza, GPH panel chair Silvestre Bello, and Hernani Braganza as member; while, the CPP/NDFP panel is composed of NDFP Chief Political Consultant Jose Maria Sison; NDFP panel chair Luis Jalandoni; and Fidel Agcaoili as member. Ambassador Elisabeth Slattum, the special envoy to the Philippines Peace Process Royal Norwegian Government, stood as witness.
In a press statement Friday, Dureza lauded the signing of the Joint Statement in
ushers in the formal re-start of “another renewed effort to end conflict and
bring about that long elusive but cherished peace in the land.” Oslo,
Dureza described their meeting “as a reunion of sorts of old friends on both sides of the negotiating table but whose efforts in various times and climes in the past proved futile.
“Now, new sparks of the dawning Rodrigo Duterte presidency are re-igniting the peace landscape,” he added.
According to Dureza, there was optimism and trust during the two-day meeting. “There is mutual enthusiasm and hope, not only amongst us negotiators across the table, but most significantly, among us all Filipinos, in whose behalf all these efforts are being done in the first place,” he added.
Dureza, however, expects some challenges along the way “but there is a destination that we must all inevitably reach.”
Since the government participants have not yet assumed office, the two panels agreed to formalize the consensus points soon after Duterte's government starts.