Arab Today, arab today philippine gov\t ends peace talk with milf
Last Updated : GMT 02:26:33
Arab Today, arab today
Arab Today, arab today

Philippine gov\'t ends peace talk with MILF

Arab Today, arab today

Arab Today, arab today Philippine gov\'t ends peace talk with MILF

Manila - XINHUA

The Philippine government and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), the country\'s largest rebel group, finally agreed to sign a framework agreement that will end the decades-long armed conflict in southern Philippines, President Benigno Aquino III announced on Sunday. In a speech delivered Sunday noon at Malacanan, or the Presidential Palace, Aquino said that part of the agreement is to come up with a new political entity to be called as Bangsamoro to replace the existing Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM). \"This Framework Agreement paves the way for a final, enduring peace in Mindanao. It brings all former secessionist groups into the fold; no longer does the Moro Islamic Liberation Front aspire for a separate state. This means that hands that once held rifles will be put to use tilling land, selling produce, manning work stations, and opening doorways of opportunity for other citizens,\" he said. Secretary Teresita Deles of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process (OPAPP) said that the agreement will be signed on Oct. 15 in Manila by the government of the Philippines (GPH) peace panel head Marvic Leonen and MILF panel chair Mohagher Iqbal. Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak of Malaysia is expected to join Aquino in witnessing the signing of the accord, she said. Malaysia acts as the facilitator in the peace process. Under the agreement, Aquino said that the national government will continue to exercise exclusive powers of defense and security, foreign policy, monetary policy and coinage, citizenship, and naturalization. \"The Constitution and lawful processes shall govern the transition to the Bangsamoro, and this agreement will ensure that the Philippines remains one nation and one people, with all of our diverse cultures and narratives seeking the common goal. The Filipinos of Bangsamoro, on the other hand, will be assured a fair and equitable share of taxation, revenues, and the fruits of national patrimony. They will enjoy equal protection of laws and access to impartial justice,\" he said. Aquino said that consistent with the Constitution, the basic law for the creation of the Bangsamoro will be drafted by a transition commission and will go through the full process of legislation in Congress. \"My administration has pledged to supporting a law that will truly embody the values and aspirations of the people of Bangsamoro. Any proposed law resulting from this framework will be subject to ratification through a plebiscite. Once approved, there will be elections,\" he said. Aside from the current ARMM, more areas in Mindanao will be covered by the Bangsamoro, but subject to plebiscite, Deles said. The agreement to sign an accord was reached after the 32nd formal exploratory talks in Kuala Lumpur.  

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