Friday, November 24, 2017

Al-Khilafah terror group member nabbed in Sarangani

From MindaNews (Nov 23): Al-Khilafah terror group member nabbed in Sarangani

Police operatives arrested an alleged key member of a terrorist cell operating in Sarangani Province in an operation on Wednesday in an outskirt village in Maasim town.

Senior Supt. Joseph Semillano, Sarangani police director, identified the suspect as Akbar Maguid Buyoc alias Abu Saipen, who was tagged as directly involved in several bomb attacks in the area staged by the terror group Ansar Al-Khilafah Philippines (AKP).

He said Buyoc was nabbed around 3:15 a.m. at his residence in Sitio Dampilan, Barangay Lumatil in Maasim.

Operatives recovered during a search at the suspect’s house a PRB NR 423 fragmentation grenade, he said.

The joint operation involved elements from the Sarangani Provincial Police Office’s intelligence branch, Sarangani Police Public Safety Company’s tracker unit, Maasim municipal police station and the Special Action Force’s 42nd Company.

Semillano said Buyoc was arrested based on Arrest Order No. 2 issued last June 5 by Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana in line with the declared martial law in the whole of Mindanao.

It directed law enforcement authorities to “arrest, take into custody and conduct/continue the investigation” of the 185 persons “for violation of Article 134 (Rebellion) of the Revised Penal Code” and any crime related to it.

The listed subjects were alleged members/supporters/spies/couriers of the Maute group, Abu Sayyaf Group, Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters and the Maguid Group (AKP).

Number 83 in the list was named “Akbar Buyo,” which reportedly refers to the suspect.

Citing intelligence reports, Semillano said Buyoc was a close ally of alleged AKP founder Mohammad Jaafar Sabewang Maguid alias “Tokboy,” who was killed in an encounter with police operatives in January at a beach resort in Kiamba, Sarangani.

He said the suspect handled the purchase of bomb-making materials for the AKP as tasked by Maguid.

AKP, which has pledged support to the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria, had been blamed over a string of terror attacks in Sarangani and neighboring areas these past years.

“We’re continuously conducting intelligence monitoring for alleged regrouping activities of AKP remnants,” Semillano said in a press conference.

As a result of Buyoc’s arrest, the Police Regional Office (PRO)-12 ordered its units in the region to remain on high alert for possible retaliatory terror attacks.

Sr. Supt. Johnson Almazan, deputy regional director for operations, assured that they have enhanced their intelligence and security operations to counter such threats.

“(PRO-12) continuously performs measures like target hardening and has been working together with other law enforcement units to address these threats within our areas of responsibility,” he said in a statement.

Mga katapo sang SpecialOperations Group nga nagapatrolya sa Barangay Bolo, Maasin, Iloilo, Gin-ambushan sang mga NPA, 12 ang pilson kag isa ang patay

From RMN News (Nov 24): Mga katapo sang SpecialOperations Group nga nagapatrolya sa Barangay Bolo, Maasin, Iloilo, Gin-ambushan sang mga NPA, 12 ang pilson kag isa ang patay

Isa ang patay ang 12 ang pilason sa mga katapo sang Special Operations Group sang Philippine National Police matapos gin-ambushan sang mga rebelde nga New Peoples Army subong lamang nga gab-i sa Sitio Camansi, Barangay Bolo, Maasin, Iloilo. 

Ginkilala ang napatay nga si Po1 Joefel Talamor Odon, 31 anyos sang banwa sang Cabatuan.

Samtang ang mga pilason nga mga pulis amo sanday PO1’s Vincent Yusay, Kit Jacon Delejero, Noli Talento, Rolando Lozada Jr., Joy Melvin Ponce, Kim Iver Salongcone Cornel, Mark Paul Banquillo, Marlon Yanson Arbues, Joseph Gonzales, Eduardo Infabnte jr. kag Po1 Bachiller.

Una nga ginpangdala sa Ramon Tabiana Memorial District Hospital sa banwa sang Cabatuan ang mga pilson apang 9 sa mga ini ang ginsaylo sa Ospital sa siyudad sang Iloilo.

Ginpahayag nga nagapatrolya ang nasambit nga mga pulis sang ginpalukpan sang landmine sang mga rebelde nga NPA sa bahin sang Sitio Camansi, Barangay Bolo, Maasin, Iloilo.

Miyembro sa Ansar Al-Khilafa Philippines, dakpan (Photo)

From RMN News (Nov 22): Miyembro sa Ansar Al-Khilafa Philippines, dakpan (Photo)

Malampusong nadakpan atol sa gipahigayong operasyon sa kapulisan ug uban pang unit ang usa ka Akbar Maguid Buyoc, alyas Saripen nga pag-umangkon ni Tokboy Maguid ug miyembro sa Ansar Al-Khilfa Philippines.

Sumala kang Sarangani Provincial Police Office Director Police Senior Superintendent Joseph Semillano nga alas 3 pasado ang takna sa kadlawon dihang gihimo ang operasyon sa may Brgy. Lumatil, Maasim, Sarangani Province.

Pamahayag niini nga una ng migawas ang pangalan ni Buyoc sa gipagawas nga arrest order sa National Defense kaniadto human gideklara ang martial law sa Mindanao.

Dugang pamahayag ni Col. Semillano nga si Buyoc ang responsable sa pagpangulekta sa mga extrosion activity sa AKP, lakip usab sa trabaho niini mao ang pagpamalit ug mga IED components sa Poblacion Maasim hangtud na dinhi sa dakbayan sa Gensan.

Kung asa siya usab maoy nagahatag ug impormasyon kang Tokboy higayon nga adunay mga operasyon nga pagahimuon ang otoridad ingon man maoy tigsugat sa mga ISIS inspired group gikan sa ubang lugar.

Samtang sa kabahin ni Police Senior Superintendent Johnson Almazan, Deputy Regional Director For Operations nga human ang kamatayon ni Tokboy, aduna na usab laing tawo nga mubarog aron nga pangunahan ang AKP.

Kini aron nga mapahismulan ang grupo nga sagad responsable sa terroristic attack. Gani una ng gikumpirma ni Col. Semillano, nga aduna pay mga nahibiling miyembro ang AKP rason nga posible pa silang magmugna ug laing grupo subay sa tinuuhan niini.

“Discreet” 5th round of GRP-NDF talks canceled after Duterte junks peace negotiation

From MindaNews (Nov 24): “Discreet” 5th round of GRP-NDF talks canceled after Duterte junks peace negotiation

The peace negotiation between government (GRP) and National Democratic Front (NDF) again suffered a major setback with the cancellation of the discreet fifth round of talks on November 25 to 27 in Oslo, Norway.

On Thursday, President Rodrigo R. Duterte issued Proclamation 360 ordering the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza and the government peace negotiators to stop all peace talks with the communists for failing to show “sincerity and commitment in pursuing genuine and meaningful peace negotiations as it engaged on acts of violence and hostilities, endangering the lives and properties of innocent people.”

Members of the New People’s Army of Northern Mindanao Guerilla Front 68 in formation during a ceremony in Barangay Tikalaan, Talakag town in Bukidnon in this file photo taken last April 17, 2017 when the NPA released a police officer it earlier held captive. MIndaNews photo by FROILAN GALLARDO

In a statement Friday, Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founder Jose Maria Sison said the GRP and NDF peace panels have agreed on three common drafts during their unannounced meetings in the past months.

Sison said the peace talks were to be kept “discreet until there would be good news to announce at the end of the fifth or sixth round of formal talks.”

Sison, Duterte’s former professor in Political Thought, said both parties would have met last November 22 and 23 in Utrecht, The Netherlands to do a “little polishing” of the agreed common drafts before the resumption of the fifth round of talks, which was cancelled in May 2017.

The common drafts included the general amnesty and release of all political prisoners in compliance with Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL); coordinated unilateral ceasefires; and Part I Agrarian Reform and Rural Development and Part II National Industrialization and Economic Development of the Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms, he said.

Sison said both parties were confident they could achieve a positive outcome in the closing session of the 5th round of formal talks and were looking forward to striking a deal during the supposed 6th round of talks in January 2018.

After this, he said, both panels would discuss the Comprehensive Agreement on Political and Constitutional Reforms in the 6th round and conclude it between March and May 2018 in time for the possible revision of the 1987 Constitution.

He questioned whether Duterte is “mentally fit” to handle the “complexities of the affairs of his state” after he terminated the talks Thursday citing the continuous attacks by the NPA, armed wing of the CPP.

All signed agreements, including the 1995 Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees, will be rendered ineffective after 30 days upon receipt of the formal notice of termination by the other party.

Sison criticized the President for using the recent NPA attacks as a “false basis” in his decision to back out from the peace talks and his threat to outlaw the legal fronts of the communists as terrorists.

Citing the CARHRIHL, Sison said Duterte should have submitted his complaints to the Joint Monitoring Committee through the government panel like the NDF did with alleged violations of the agreement committed by government forces under the all-out war policy, Oplan Kapayapaan and martial law in Mindanao.

He said the violations committed by the police and military are “far worse in scale and severity than those alleged by Duterte against the NPA” but that the communists did not threaten to terminate the peace talks.

He dismissed the President’s allegation that the NDF has been ignoring “the GRP proposal for a stand down agreement prior to the adoption and implementation of the coordinated unilateral ceasefire.”

“GRP officials in his Cabinet and the reactionary armed forces should consider whether he is mentally fit for his office or needs to be replaced in accordance with their 1987 Constitution,” he said.

In a press briefing on Friday, Armed Forces of the Philippines spokesperson Brig. Gen. Restituto Padilla discussed why they supported the President in his decision to drop the talks with the communists.

Padilla said they recorded 353 crimes allegedly committed by the NPA in Eastern Mindanao and 16 in Central Mindanao from January 1 to November 6, including harassments in military camps and other areas, arson, ambush, kidnapping and robbery.

He said the rebels destroyed properties worth P2.18 billion so far this year, an increase from the P101.56 million for the entire 2016.

“They are destroying the economy and the number of violent incidents that they are doing is increasing,” he said.

Padilla added the NPA killed 64 military and police officers and members of the Citizen Armed Force Geographical Unit, and 70 civilians, including four-month old Walysha Machorao, in the November 9 ambush against a police patrol car in Bukidnon.

The attacks wounded 127 military and police officers and 13 civilians wounded, and resulted in the disappearance of 28 civilians, he said.

“We will continue to do our mandate and perform and ensure the safety of our communities,” he said.

He said the martial law in Mindanao will continue to address the movement and presence of terrorist elements and criminals.

Duterte branded as ‘terrorist, mass murderer’

From the Mindanao Examiner (Nov 23): Duterte branded as ‘terrorist, mass murderer’

Communist rebel chieftain Jose Maria Sison has branded Thursday the Filipino leader Rodrigo Duterte as the “No. 1 terrorist” in the Philippines and accused him of mass murder as the tough talking former mayor of Davao City scrapped the peace talks.

“Duterte is the No. 1 terrorist in the Philippines. He is culpable for the abduction, torture and mass murder of an increasing large number of poor people suspected drug users and pushers, peasants and indigenous people in suspected guerrilla fronts and Moro people suspected of aiding the Dawlah Islamiyah from the time of the indiscriminate bombing of Marawi City to the present in several Bangsamoro areas,” Sison, who is self-exile in The Netherlands, said in a statement sent to the regional newspaper Mindanao Examiner.

Duterte has threatened to outlaw the Communist Party of the Philippines, which Sison founded; and its armed wing the New People’s Army and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines and jail its leaders, including leftist and human rights organizations conniving with them. He scrapped the peace talks after rebels declined to sign a ceasefire accord and continue attacking government and civilian targets despite on-going negotiations.

Sison called Duterte, who previously supported the NPA in Davao when he was mayor, as a bloodlust politician whose mania for mass murder are boundless. “Duterte´s bloodlust and mania for mass murder are boundless. He expects to wipe out through arbitrary arrests, torture, indefinite detention and massacre of suspected revolutionaries and legal social activists both the armed revolutionary movement and the legal democratic movement in order to set up a fascist dictatorship in the service of US imperialism and his fellow oligarchs among the big compradors, landlords and corrupt bureaucrats,” he said.

“And yet Duterte is utterly malicious and shameless in threatening and scheming to label and outlaw as terrorists the suspected members and entireties of such revolutionary organizations as the National Democratic Front of the Philippines, the Communist Party of the Philippines and the New People´s Army and even such legal patriotic and progressive organizations as BAYAN and its affiliates,” added Sison, a former university professor.

He said the Duterte administration, backed by the United States, is hell-bent on frustrating the people´s clamor for peace negotiations to address the roots of the civil war through the adoption and implementation of social, economic, political and constitutional reforms as the basis of a just and lasting peace.

Sison said the Philippine government is striving to intimidate the people with its own terrorist scheme and crimes in order to seize absolute autocratic power for Duterte and limitless opportunity for the bureaucratic corruption of his family and ruling clique.

He said the rebel forces now have no choice, but to wage all forms of resistance and fight for national sovereignty, democracy, economic development, social and cultural progress and independent foreign policy.

“The Filipino people and revolutionary forces waging the people´s democratic revolution have no choice but to intensify the people´s war through an extensive and intensive guerrilla warfare in rural areas and partisan or commando operations in urban areas. The legal democratic forces and broad opposition have no choice but to develop the underground and encourage endangered activists to become fighters in the people´s army.”

“Duterte is already discredited as a mass murderer, political swindler, a sycophant to foreign powers and a corrupt bureaucrat. These characteristics of his and the ever worsening chronic crisis of the semi-colonial and semi-feudal ruling system will surely limit his ability to stay in power and accelerate the growth and rise of a revolutionary united front against his rule of greed and terror,” Sison said.

He said even within the armed forces and police, there are already rumblings against the “despotic, criminal and corrupt character of the US-Duterte regime” and that the President is now worried to death by his own fear that anti-Duterte officers within his own army and police are inclined to act in the name of the people and unite with the broad opposition and mass movement in order to end the Duterte regime in the same manner that the Marcos and Estrada regimes were ended.”

There was no immediate reaction from Duterte or his spokesman Harry Roque. The NPA has been fighting for many decades now for the establishment of its own state in the country.

ISIS weapons, nabawi sa Lake Lanao

From the Mindanao Examiner (Nov 24): ISIS weapons, nabawi sa Lake Lanao

Makikita sa larawang ito na ipinasa ngayon Biyernes ng Western Mindanao Command sa Mindanao Examiner regional newspaper  ang sari-saring armas ng ISIS na nabawi ng mga sundalo sa Marawi City.

Makikita sa larawang ito na ipinasa ngayon Biyernes ng Western Mindanao Command sa Mindanao Examiner regional newspaper ang sari-saring armas ng ISIS na nabawi ng mga sundalo sa Marawi City.

MARAWI CITY – Nabawi ng militar ang sari-saring armas na pagaari umano ng ISIS na itinapon sa Lake Lanao upang itago sa mga sundalo na patuloy ang clearing operation sa Marawi City.

Sinabi ng Western Mindanao Command na kabilang sa mga armas na nabawi ay isang M60 machine gun, dalawang anti-tank rocket launcher at 13 mga bala nito at 18 mga rifle grenades.

Nakuha ito ng mga combat divers ng Special Operations Group ng Philippine Navy at Special Forces ng Philippie Army. “It has been 37 days since the liberation of Marawi, but our troops still recover armaments from the main battle area which are believed to be from the members of the Daesh-inspired Maute terror group. Search and recovery operations will continue until we are certain that Marawi is totally cleared,” ani Brigadier General Murillo, commander ng Joint Task Force Ranao.

Wala naman natagpuang mga ISIS stragglers sa lugar, ngunit tumatagal ang clearing operation dahil sa pangambang may mga bombing iniwan sa mga gusaling pinagkutaan ng ISIS.

Sa kabila nito ay libon-libong mga residente na rin ang nakabalik sa kanilang mga lugar, subali’t wala naman silang matirhan dahil karamihan sa mga bahay at gusali sa ibat-ibang barangay ay nawasak o nasira sa pambobomba ng militar.

AFP backs PRRD order to end peace talks with Reds

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 24): AFP backs PRRD order to end peace talks with Reds

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) supports President Rodrigo Duterte's decision to terminate peace negotiations with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF), its spokesperson said Friday.

Maj. Gen. Restituto Padilla, AFP spokesperson, said 64 soldiers, police officers and militiamen had been killed while another 127 had been wounded in various attacks and ambushes conducted by the NPA this year alone.

Aside from these, rebel attacks also accounted for 70 civilian deaths, including a four-month baby girl in Bukidnon last Nov. 9, along with 13 wounded and another 28 missing.

Padilla said the AFP will continue focused military operations against NPA rebels attempting to conduct atrocities and other forms of harassment while giving a chance to those who want to surrender and live peaceful lives again with their families and loved ones.

Talks with the rebels were ordered scrapped by the Chief Executive in his Proclamation 360, signed on Thursday, following the series of atrocities committed by NPA bands against military and civilian targets in various parts of the country.

No ‘all-out’ war order despite peace talks end: AFP

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 24): No ‘all-out’ war order despite peace talks end: AFP

Despite President Rodrigo Duterte's declaration to end peace negotiations with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF), the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) on Friday announced that it will not resort to an ‘all-out’ war against the rebels.

“Hindi tayo nag-uusap ng anumang all-out-war dito. Ang sinasabi po natin dito ay ang pagwawakas ng usapang pangkapayapaan na nais sana ay nagpatuloy kasi gusto namin magbalik loob ang iba natin mga kapatid” (We’re not talking about any all-out-war here. What we are saying here is the termination of the peace talks that we had hoped continued, because we want to bring our brothers back), AFP spokesperson Major Gen. Restituto Padilla said.

However, he clarified that the AFP will still fulfill its mandate of protecting the country's sovereignty against all forms of threats especially in the rural communities, which is presently ‘threatened’ by the rebel bands.

"We will fulfill that mandate," Padilla said.

Despite the cancellation of peace talks with the CPP-NPA-NDF in the national level, Padilla is hopeful that localized peace talks with the rebels will bear fruit.

He said that these negotiations are being pushed by local government units to give NPA rebels a chance to reunite with their families and live peaceful and productive lives again.

Padilla added that the results of local peace talks remain "encouraging,” as 391 members of the NPA and 66 of their supporters have already surrendered to authorities.

Peace negotiations with the communist rebels were ordered terminated in Duterte's Proclamation 360, which was signed last November 23.

The order was issued following the series of atrocities and attacks committed by the NPA, the CPP’s armed wing, in various parts of the country.

Priest urges new soldiers to be more professional

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 24): Priest urges new soldiers to be more professional

A Roman Catholic bishop in Samar province has reminded new soldiers to be more professional and be good Filipino citizens.

Speaking before new recruits of the Philippine Army’s 8th Infantry Division (ID) on Thursday, Calbayog Samar Diocese Bishop Isabelo Avarquez urged them to apply the characters expected of them.

“We should see our work as a real service to our country, to be good citizens of our country. Be good citizens, be good breed of soldiers. Use your profession for the greater glory of God and be productive for our country and community," Avarquez said.

The church leader was the guest of honor and speaker at the graduation of the new batch of soldiers under the 8th ID and the ceremonial entrustment of firearms to the newly enlisted soldiers.

The 8th ID has 154 new soldiers, majority of whom are from Eastern Visayas and Mindanao. On their educational profile, 19 of them are college graduates; 44 are college undergraduates; and 91 are high school graduates with skills training from the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority.

After the graduation of the new soldiers, the 8th ID began the training for a new batch of nearly 200 aspiring soldiers at the 801st Brigade camp in Hinabangan. There is also an ongoing recruitment of 500 soldiers in the region.

Interested applicants may proceed to the Office of the Assistant Chief of Staff for personnel and must bring along with them the original copy of the following documents: birth certificate from the Philippine Statistics Authority, school grade records, school diploma, one 2x2 picture with name tag, and valid identification cards.

28T-strong force to secure Davao for ‘Pasko Fiesta’

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 24): 28T-strong force to secure Davao for ‘Pasko Fiesta’

The Davao City Public Safety and Security Command Center (PSSCC) will deploy about 28,000 security forces in the city for the celebration of the month-long Pasko Fiesta sa Davao next month.

PSSCCC deputy head Angel Sumagaysay said the security personnel will not only focus on Pasko Fiesta official events but also the activities organized by the private sector.

“We also consider the area particularly the places of convergence, that is why we reached this number to compliment with the huge number of people,” Sumagaysay said.

Pasko Fiesta will open on December 1, featuring a candy land theme for the Yuletide season.

Sumagaysay said the security forces will be ready for deployment next week.

“The day before the opening of Pasko Fiesta we will have soft deployment and during the opening day on December 1 until the end of the month-long event, we will have a full blast deployment,” Sumagaysay said.

Sumagaysay said the city will source the security personnel from Task Force Davao, Police Regional Office 11, Davao City Police Office and the police auxiliaries.

“We will also extend the full deployment on first few days of January 2018 because we expect the influx of people in the malls and beaches,” he said.

He said this was the product of the security meetings after they presented their Security Plan to the Pasko Fiesta executive committee on November 15.

Duterte leads 1st Scout Ranger Regiment anniversary in Bulacan

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 24): Duterte leads 1st Scout Ranger Regiment anniversary in Bulacan

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte is now a proud member of the elite First Scout Ranger Regiment (FSRR).

Clad in a scout ranger uniform, the President on Friday was bestowed the honorary Scout Ranger badge by Brig. Gen. Rene Glen Paje during the 67th founding anniversary of the FSRR held in this camp.

Paje, commanding general of the scout ranger, said that the Chief Executive has been very supportive to the military troops.

President Duterte, for his part, congratulated the scout ranger troops for their efforts and sacrifices, particularly during the Marawi crisis.

The Chief Executive and Commander-in-Chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines also led the awarding of medals to 44 fallen soldiers of the FSRR and 83 others for their exemplary sacrifice and gallantry in battle.

During his speech, the President reiterated before the scout rangers that he has already signed a proclamation terminating the peace talks with the Communist Party of the Philippines-National Democratic Front and New People’s Army (CPP-NDF-NPA).

The President said that he had already noted the trend of thoughts of the other side and its pure non-sense.

He also said that he is building a strong military with modern weapons.

He said that all firearms used in Marawi will be replaced and the government will purchase more helicopters.

Meanwhile, the President also announced that he is set to sign an executive order returning the administration’s war on drugs to the Philippine National Police (PNP) from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agencey (PDEA).

He also stressed that he is determined to end corruption.

Military awaits guidance on arrest of NDF consultants

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 24): Military awaits guidance on arrest of NDF consultants

The Eastern Mindanao Command (Eastmincom) will wait for guidance from the higher headquarters on dealing with the consultants of the National Democratic Front (NDF) who were temporarily released from detention to take part in the peace negotiations.

“We are just waiting for guidance from the higher headquarters,” Eastmincom commander Lt. Gen. Benjamin Madrigal said when asked by reporters on the arrest of the consultants during the Hermes Club at Waterfront Hotel.

Madrigal said the military is also waiting for the formal proclamation of the CPP-NPA-NDF as a terrorist organization, although he added that the activities of the NPA rebels such as extortion, burning of equipment and destroying agricultural plantations are tantamount to "terroristic activities.

"He noted that the military is just an instrument of national power and matters on peace negotiations are decided by the political leaders.

The Philippine National Police also has the primary responsibility to arrest criminal elements, the military official added.

In an interview with Radyo Pilipinas in Davao, the government's peace panel chairman, Secretary Silvestre Bello III, said NDF consultants who were granted provisional liberty may voluntarily submit themselves to the authorities.

Bello said NDF consultants granted temporary liberty number about 40, though some of them have been granted pardon by the President.

Under the Joint Agreement on Security and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG), the protection and immunities are revoked 30 days after receipt of the formal notice on the termination of the peace negotiations.

On Thursday, President Rodrigo Duterte formally terminated the peace negotiations and all other meetings between the government and the CPP-NPA-NDF through the issuance of Proclamation No. 360.

Early this year, the President cancelled the GRP-NDF peace talks after the NPA terminated the unilateral ceasefire in February.

In a press statement, the NDFP Reciprocal Working Committee on Social and Economic Reforms (RWC-SER) voiced concerns over the cancellation of the talks as there are already advances achieved in forging agreements on urgently needed socio-economic reforms to alleviate mass poverty and resolve the roots of the armed conflict.

In his Proclamation, Duterte explained that the administration agreed to speed up the signing and implementation of the final peace agreement with the communist movement but that the latter failed to show "sincerity and commitment."

"In spite of the best efforts exerted by this Administration, the NDF-CPP-NPA failed to show its sincerity and commitment in pursuing genuine and meaningful peace negotiations as it engaged on acts of violence and hostilities, endangering the lives and properties of innocent people," the President said.

2 Abu Sayyaf suspects nabbed in Zamboanga City

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 22): 2 Abu Sayyaf suspects nabbed in Zamboanga City

Joint police and military operatives have arrested two alleged members of the Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) in a coastal village here, an official announced Wednesday.

Chief Insp. Helen Galvez, Police Regional Office-9 (PRO-9) information officer, identified the arrested ASG members as Jalani Abirin alias “Master”, 50 and Said Omar alias “Tikboy”, 40. Both are natives of Buton, Mohammad Ajul, Basilan province.

Galvez said the lawmen served the two suspects their warrants of arrest around 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday in Barangay Sangali in this city.

She said Abirin has three standing warrants of arrest for kidnapping and serious illegal detention, murder, and robbery with homicide issued by a court in Isabela City, Basilan.

She added that Omar has standing warrant of arrest for murder.

The court did not recommend any bail for their temporary liberty, she added.

Army overruns 2 BIFF camps in North Cotabato

From the Philippine News Agency (Nov 22): Army overruns 2 BIFF camps in North Cotabato

The military here overran Wednesday two camps of the ISIS-linked Bangsamoro Islamic Liberation Front (BIFF) in North Cotabato following artillery and surgical air strikes.

Capt. Arvin John Encinas, speaking for the Army’s 6th Infantry Division (6ID), said the 602nd Infantry Brigade found the twin camps of the BIFF faction of Esmael Abdulmalik alias Commander Abu Toraife in the villages of Tonganon in Aleosan and Bentangan in Carmen, both in North Cotabato.

Government troopers found the two camps abandoned. He could not say if there were casualties from the terrorist group during the military operations, Capt. Encinas said.

“We have reports about it but we cannot confirm since there was no body count,” he said.

The camps, Encinas said, could accommodate as many as 100 persons, has several nipa huts, running trenches and caves. Encinas could not say where the ISIS-linked group now after they abandoned their camps.

Earlier, Lt. Colonel Gerry Besana, chief of the 6ID civil military operations, said intelligence information revealed that Toraife’s group was coddling several foreign looking terrorists.

Toraife and his men left the adjoining towns of Datu Salibo, Shariff Saydona, Shariff Aguak and Mamasapano in Maguindanao last month due to massive military operations.

The Army had the backing of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in hunting down the BIFF that has sought sanctuary in the forested section of nearby North Cotabato province.

Last week, the military also launched airstrikes after the group of Toraife moved to the border of Carmen and Aleosan towns in North Cotabato. Their presence was monitored by Army intelligence in coordination with MILF.

More than 200 families displaced by the Army offensives in North Cotabato have slowly returned home, disaster officials said.