AFP chief welcomes BBL passage as 'antidote to terrorism'

MANILA, Philippines – Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) chief General Carlito Galvez Jr said he's "so happy" with the passage of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL).

"We're so happy. As I have said, the BBL is one of the antidotes to terrorism. Once we have passed the BBL, the political solution will be embraced," Galvez said. 

Galvez is a known advocate of the peace process with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). He worked closely with the dominant Muslim rebel group when he served as co-chairman of the Coordinating Committee on the Cessation of Hostilities.

Galvez said the MILF "on the ground" also welcome the BBL's passage.

"I believe they are very happy with the passage. This is a long negotiation since 1997 when we had a ceasefire. I believe this is a very positive milestone," said the AFP chief.

The creation of a new Bangsamoro region to replace the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) will make way for "more cooperative management" between the military and the MILF, added Galvez. –