Sunday, March 12, 2017

AFP always supportive of peace process

From the Philippine News Agency (Mar 12): AFP always supportive of peace process

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) is always strongly behind the government's various initiatives.

This was stressed by AFP spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla on Sunday when sought for a comment after the Government of the Philippine negotiating panel and the National Democratic Front (NDF) agreed to a resumption of the peace talks in the Netherlands.

"The AFP has time and again expressed its unequivocal support to all peace initiatives undertaken by our government past and present. We also have a proven track record of being an able and reliable partner in all the peace talks undertaken by our country," he added.

Informal talks between the government and the NDF were held in Utrecht on March 10 and 11.

The meeting was hosted by third party and facilitator Royal Norwegian Government led by Elizabeth Stattum.

"We share the Commander-in-Chief's (President Rodrigo Duterte) aspiration to attain a just and lasting peace for our country and will do all we can to deliver on this for the benefit of all our citizens specially in conflict affected areas," Padilla stressed.

However, pending the official message and instruction from the Chief Executive, all military operations against New People's Army units will continue.

"We will anxiously await the official message of our panel and the instructions of our Commander-in-Chief. Pending this, all military operations will continue and remain at current state," the AFP spokesperson further said.

Duterte ordered the lifting of the unilateral ceasefire against the rebels last Feb. 4 in wake of the NPA's series of unprovoked attacks against government troops which resulted in the death of six and abduction of three others.

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