PH, MNLF set agenda for high level talks in Jeddah
MANILA, Philippines – The Philippine government and the Moro National Liberation Front set the agenda of the forthcoming ministerial level tripartite meeting in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.
For the upcoming meeting proposed to be held in November, both the government and the MNLF agreed to revisit agreements on key implementing measures of the 1996 peace pact, signed by former President Fidel V. Ramos and the MNLF.
This peace accord resulted in the expansion of areas covered by the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), the integration of MNLF members into the Armed Forces and the Philippine National Police, and the establishment of transitory mechanisms and special agencies for the development of Mindanao.
According to the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, here are the agreements to be reviewed in the upcoming ministerial level tripartite meeting:
- The Bangsamoro Development Assistance Fund (BDAF), which aims to address the socio-economic issues and needs of the Bangsamoro People. Both the government and the MNLF agreed to follow-up the terms of reference of BDAF with the Islamic Development Bank (IDB)
- Tripartite Implementation and Monitoring Committee, which aims to monitor the implementation of all agreements of the Tripartite Implementation Process.
- The co-management of strategic minerals in the region.
During the two-day conference in Makati City on September 7 and 8, the two parties also presented their views on the merging of all previous peace accords and expansion of areas covered by the autonomous region.
The government insisted that all gains of the 1976 and 1996 peace agreements with the MNLF and the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front “are preserved” in the pending Bangsamoro Basic Law. (READ: MNLF, sultans want out of Bangsamoro)
However, the MNLF maintains the government has yet to fully implement both peace agreements.
There are efforts from the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, an influential body among Muslim countries, to unite the MILF and the MNLF. The OIC is also the third-party facilitator of the GPH-MNLF peace deal, through its Peace Committee of the Southern Philippines (OIC-PCSP).
In a bid to address the grievances of the MNLF, the MILF incorporated aspects of the 1996 peace pact that the MNLF still wants to be implemented in the BBL. These provisions are known as the "42 consensus points." – Rappler.com