SAN Francisco, Agusan del Sur--The National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) in Mindanao has supported the resumption of peace talks between them and the Philippine government but warned the military to truly follow a possible stand down agreement.
“ We are looking forward to the resumption of the peace talks between the NDFP and the GRP, which will possibly commence this month,” Said Ka Joaquin Jacinto, spokesman of NDFP Mindanao.
Jacinto has reminded the Armed Forces of the Philippines their lapses in previous unilateral ceasefire agreement saying the “as is where is “ nature of a stand-down gives the AFP the latitude to deploy their troops within the vicinity of barangays in Mindanao well ahead of the stand-down on the pretext of “civilian-related” military operations.
“Should this be the case, it will impinge upon the rights of the people in numerous barangays, and will not foment but virtually erode genuine conditions upon which the peace process could prosper,” the NDFP Mindanao spokesman said.
He particularly said the stand down agreement can only happen if the AFP’s Community Organizing of Peace and Development (COPD) and Peace and Development Teams (PDT) should be stopped without undue pressure.
Jacinto said before the start of the formal talks, there is also the possibility of a “stand-down”, which will operate with the benefit of monitoring committees that will monitor its progress, including violations committed therein.
NDFP Mindanao has rejected the AFP’s proposal for “local peace talks” which Jacinto said is only aimed at sabotaging the true nature of the peace talks between the NDFP and the GRP by creating division and disunity within and among the revolutionary forces.
“This has been pushed by the AFP before, and even went as far as establishing fake “peace zones,” but the NDFP-Mindanao and the forces of the revolution will not allow any and all attempts to splinter the revolutionary movement, let alone sabotage the peace process,” he said.
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