Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Dureza optimistic Rome talks end with 'positive outcomes'

From the Philippine News Agency (Jan 17): Dureza optimistic Rome talks end with 'positive outcomes'

Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus G. Dureza on Tuesday said the Philippine government “views with optimism, although with managed expectations, positive outcomes in the forthcoming resumption of peace negotiations” with the Communist Party of the Philippines/New People’s Army (CCP/NPA) in Rome on January 19 to 25, 2017.

In a statement, Dureza said the third round of talks hopes to tackle the still unfinished discussions on the proposed bilateral ceasefire vis-a-vis the issues on the release of prisoners.

“The crucial agenda items on socio-economic reforms; constitutional and political reforms; and end of hostilities and disposition of forces are on the table for discussions," Dureza said.

Dureza added that although these issues are difficult, they are surmountable as long as both panels share common aspirations for peace.

The preparatory work and engagements by both sides, respectively headed by Secretary Silvestre Bello III and Fidel Agcaoili, even before the third round of talks, auger well for possible significant progress with the hosting and facilitation of the Norwegian team headed by Ambassador Elisabeth Slattum.

President Rodrigo Duterte has instructed the government panel to work for an early settlement of the issues as he calls on the nation to provide support to the efforts to ultimately bring peace in the land.

“The outcomes of the third round of talks can bring us closer to achieving some possible milestones for sustainable peace,” Dureza concluded.


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