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Over 8,000 MILF fighters decommissioned in 2019 – OPAPP

Jan 19, 2020 - 7:00 PM

Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Assistant Secretary Wilven Mayor says a total of 12,000 Moro Islamic Liberation Front fighters will be decommissioned by 'early 2020'

DECOMMISSIONING. Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) rebels stand guard at the entry of Camp Darapanan, Sultan Kudarat on September 7, 2019 ahead of a weapons decommissioning ceremony. Photo by Ferdinandh Cabrera/AFP

China and Myanmar 'stand together' despite Rohingya backlash

Jan 18, 2020 - 4:47 PM

The elaborate signing ceremony came between sit-down meetings with Suu Kyi and powerful army chief Min Aung Hlaing, who stands accused of masterminding the Rohingya crackdown

STATE VISIT. Chinese President Xi Jinping touched down in Myanmar's capital, January 17, 2019, on a state visit aimed at buttressing the embattled government of Aung San Suu Kyi and driving through multi-billion-dollar infrastructure deals. Photo by Thet Aung/AFP

[PODCAST] Making Space: Married at 14

Jan 15, 2020 - 5:52 PM

In some parts of the Philippines, children as young as 12 years old can get married. Listen as Rappler's Vernise Tantuco and Mara Cepeda explore the topic in this episode of 'Making Space.'

Myanmar sends nearly 200 Rohingya captured at sea to Rakhine camps

Jan 13, 2020 - 11:18 PM

The nearly 200 arrested Rohingya Muslims are taken to either Thechaung camp or transported further north to Ngakhuya camp in Maungdaw township

ROHINGYA. Rohingya people who were arrested at sea in December walk on a beach after being transported by Myanmar authorities to Thalchaung near Sittwe in Rakhine state on January 13, 2020. Photo by AFP

Sex, Hitler, and IKEA: Protesting Indians get creative

Dec 28, 2019 - 12:49 PM

India protesters bear placards borrowing famous lines from the TV series 'Game of Thrones' and the Lindsay Lohan movie 'Mean Girls'

MODI LIKENED TO HITLER. In this file photo taken on December 18, 2019, protesters hold a poster comparing Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi to German chancellor and Nazi Party leader Adolf Hitler at a demonstration against India's new citizenship law in Siliguri. Photo by Diptendu Dutta/AFP

Thousands protest in rival demonstrations over new India law

Dec 27, 2019 - 11:05 PM

At least 27 people have died in two weeks of violent demonstrations after Hindu nationalist Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government made it easier for non-Muslims from Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to be naturalized

Protesters hold placards and Indian flags during a rally in support of India's new citizenship law in Mumbai on December 27, 2019. - Mobile internet was cut on December 27 in parts of India's most populous state and thousands of riot police were deployed as authorities readied for fresh protests over a citizenship law seen as anti-Muslim. (Photo by INDRANIL MUKHERJEE / AFP)

Modi seeks to soothe India's Muslims as deadly protests swell

Dec 22, 2019 - 8:06 PM

At least 25 people have died in 10 days of demonstrations and violence after Narendra Modi's government passed the law criticized as anti-Muslim. More protests took place on Sunday.

'NO NEED TO WORRY.' India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi delivers a speech to the nation during a ceremony to celebrate country's 73rd Independence Day. Photo by Prakash Singh/AFP

India protests rage against citizenship law, but Modi defiant

Dec 18, 2019 - 7:25 AM

In a major challenge to India Prime Minister Narendra Modi, tens of thousands of people take to the streets for the 6th day against a new citizenship law critics say is anti-Muslim

Advocates at the Allahabad High Court take part in a protest against India's new citizenship law in Allahabad on December 17, 2019. Fresh protests against India's new citizenship law erupted December 17 as alleged police brutality fuelled fury against the legislation which critics say is anti-Muslim. SANJAY KANOJIA / AFP

Bangsamoro intergovernmental body finally meets

Dec 17, 2019 - 10:22 AM

Finance Secretary Carlos Dominguez III and BARMM Education Minister Mohagher Iqbal lead the critical coordinating body, which was formed 9 months after the inauguration of the Bangsamoro region

Voters in thia interior town of Salvador, Lanao del Norte have an easier time casting their vote for the BOL plebiscite in Lanao del Norte. Photo by Bobby Lagsa/Rappler)

Suu Kyi slammed for 'silence' over Myanmar genocide claims

Dec 12, 2019 - 7:17 PM

Lawyers for Gambia say her arguments that Myanmar's 2017 military crackdown was a 'clearance operation' targeting militants ignored widespread allegations of mass murder, rape and forced deportation

AUNG SAN SUU KYI. Myanmar's State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi arrives in a car on the last day of hearing on the Rohingya genocide case before the UN International Court of Justice at the Peace Palace in The Hague, on December 12, 2019. Photo by Sem Van Der Wal/ANP/AFP

Myanmar's Suu Kyi rejects genocide claims in U.N. court

Dec 11, 2019 - 4:51 PM

(3rd UPDATE) Myanmar's civilian leader rejects the 'misleading and incomplete' allegations by The Gambia that Myanmar's 2017 military operation amounted to an attempt to exterminate the Rohingya

SUU KYI. A handout photo released on December 10, 2019 by the International Court of Justice shows Myanmar's State Counsellor Aung San Suu Kyi attending the start of a 3-day hearing on the Rohingya genocide case before the UN International Court of Justice at the Peace Palace of The Hague. Photo by Frank Van Beek/UN Photo/ICJ/AFP

Bangladesh starts fencing Rohingya camps

Dec 10, 2019 - 9:35 PM

Bangladesh's refugee commissioner Mahhbub Alam Talukder confirms that construction has begun but declines to comment further

FENCES. Rohingyas laborers carry a concrete pillar as authorities prepare erecting pillars for barbed-wire fences around Balukhali refugee in Ukhia on December 10, 2019. Photo by Munir Uz Zaman/AFP

Gov't to help 200 indigent Filipino Muslims perform 2020 hajj

Dec 06, 2019 - 3:29 PM

The National Commission on Muslim Filipinos says their agency would finance the pilgrimage to Mecca of eligible but impoverished pilgrims

SACRED PLACE. Muslim pilgrims prepare to circumambulate the Kaaba, Islam's holiest shrine, at the Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia's holy city of Mecca on August 27, 2017, prior to the start of the annual Hajj pilgrimage. Photo by Karim Sahib/AFP

SEA Games 2019 organizers ignored NCMF offer on halal food

Nov 26, 2019 - 8:41 AM

'I had warned them about this scenario re: halal food during the interagency meeting for the SEA Games back in September and offered the assistance of the NCMF. We were ignored,' says NCMF

150 more MILF soldiers join Bangsamoro security team

Nov 24, 2019 - 9:10 PM

The former rebel fighters join members of the police and military in a security force tasked with protecting certain areas of the Bangsamoro region until an elected government is established in 2022

FORMER REBELS. Among members of the latest batch of the Joint Peace and Security Team of the Bangsamoro region are former rebel combatants of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, who completed their training on November 22, 2019. Photo from OPAPP

U.S. funds P1 billion in programs to help BARMM transition, fight terrorism

Nov 22, 2019 - 8:36 PM

Suicide bombings in Mindanao are a ‘major concern,’ says a top US counterterrorism official visiting Manila to boost cooperation in tactical response, border security, and cutting terrorist funding

FIGHTING TERRORISM. The siege of Marawi City in 2017 is a grim reminder of the insidious threat of terrorism in the Philippines. File photo by Bobby Lagsa/Rappler

ICC authorizes probe into alleged Myanmar Rohingya abuse

Nov 14, 2019 - 10:46 PM

The probe will look at allegations of 'systematic acts of violence,' deportation as a crime against humanity, and persecution on the grounds of ethnicity or religion against the Rohingyas

ROHINGYA. In this file photo, Rohingya refugees attend a ceremony organized to remember the 2nd anniversary of a military crackdown that prompted a massive exodus of people from Myanmar to Bangladesh, at the Kutupalong refugee camp in Ukhia on August 25, 2019. File photo by Munir Uz Zaman/AFP

Delays, anomalies in Lanao infra projects haunt Bangsamoro region

Nov 14, 2019 - 3:03 PM

Lack of contracts, delays of over one year mar public works projects in Lanao del Sur's 2nd District, pressuring the new Bangsamoro government to act

[OPINION] Building social capital with the Bangsamoro is a must

Nov 03, 2019 - 4:00 PM

Civil society must do its part by offering much-needed support, because we all know that criticizing from a distance can only do so much

8 more party-list lawmakers forge alliance with Lakas-CMD

Oct 02, 2019 - 4:30 PM

Lakas-CMD now has a total of 26 members and allies in the House – 13 district representatives as party members and 13 party-list legislators as allies

ALLIES. Lakas-CMD stalwarts Martin Romualdez, Mikey Arroyo, and Prospero Pichay pose with 3 of their new party-list allies on September 30, 2019. Photo from Romualdez's Facebook page

Duterte urged to form Bangsamoro intergovernmental relations body

Oct 01, 2019 - 4:00 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte has yet to create an intergovernmental relations body deemed critical to the success of the new Bangsamoro region in Mindanao

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte chats with Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Carlito Galvez Jr. and Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Interim Chief Minister Al Haj Murad Ebrahim during the launch of the second phase of the decommissioning of Moro Islamic Liberation Front combatants and weapons at the Old Provincial Capitol Compound in Sultan Kudarat, Maguindanao on September 7, 2019. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Congresswomen push bill vs child marriage: ‘We owe it to young girls’

Oct 01, 2019 - 3:29 PM

'Child marriages are manifestations of gender-based discrimination against girls and cultural norms that value girls less than boys,' says House committee on women and gender equality chairperson Ma. Lourdes Acosta Alba

#GIRLDEFENDERS. Congresswomen, government officials, advocates, and young advocates come together to push for the bill aiming to end child marriage. Photo by Mara Cepeda/Rappler

AFP to probe Murad’s claim that military is ‘main source’ of Mindanao loose firearms

Sep 18, 2019 - 5:07 PM

The interim chief minister of the new Bangsamoro autonomous region earlier said that many loose firearms in Mindanao bear the markings of the Department of National Defense

LOOSE FIREARMS. Al Hajj Murad Ebrahim, BARMM interim Chief Minister and MILF Chairman, said the military is the 'main source' of illegal firearms in Mindanao. In this photo, Presidential Peace Process Adviser Carlito Galvez Jr inspects guns submitted by the MILF for decommissioning in Simuay, Sultan Kudarat on September 7, 2019. Photo by Rappler

Mindanao lawmakers seek creation of 'National DPWH' in BARMM

Sep 17, 2019 - 12:29 PM

Deputy Speaker Mujiv Hataman says this would allow BARMM to properly implement infrastructure programs funded by the national government, but BARMM spokesperspon Naguib Sinarimbo believes it is 'not allowed'

NEW GOVERNMENT. BTA members gather for BARMM's inauguration in March 2019. Malacañang file photo

Duterte names ex-ARMM official, youth activist as Bangsamoro gov't members

Sep 13, 2019 - 3:28 PM

Rasol Mitmug Jr and Jam Disimban Ramos are appointed to the Bangsamoro Transition Authority, bringing its membership to 78 out of the required 80

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte delivers his speech during the inauguration of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in Cotabato City on March 29, 2019. ROBINSON NIÑAL JR./PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Foreign embassies required to get DFA clearance before donating to BARMM

Sep 12, 2019 - 3:23 PM

Foreign Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr warns 'there'll be hell to pay' if foreign embassies bypass the Department of Foreign Affairs

BANGSAMORO REGION. In January 2019, majority of voters in the Bangsamoro region voted to ratify the Bangsamoro Organic Law. Photo by Red Santos/Office of Senator Miguel Zubiri

WATCH: ‘My 14-year-old daughter married a stranger’

Sep 12, 2019 - 2:55 PM

This is the story of the child brides of Marawi, the once-prosperous city ravaged by war

CHILD BRIDE. Fatima* was just 14 years old when she was forced to marry a stranger. Photo by Bobby Lagsa/Rappler

Can't afford to fail: Bangsamoro region weathers birth pains

Sep 09, 2019 - 7:45 PM

In its first 5 months, the new Bangsamoro government gets past birth pains as its Parliament and Cabinet struggle to make an impact on the daily lives of the region's people

Lakas-CMD recruits 2 new lawmakers, allies with 5 party-list groups

Sep 03, 2019 - 2:57 PM

Lakas-CMD will 'continue to strengthen our political influence nationwide,' says party president and House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez

GETTING STRONGER. Lakas-CMD president Martin Romualdez administers the oath of new members, Representatives Hector Sanchez and Wilter Wee Palma II. Lakas-CMD member Juan Miguel Arroyo witness the oath-taking. Photo courtesy Romualdez's office

Too young to marry

Sep 01, 2019 - 12:00 PM

When Fatima woke up three days into the new year, she had no idea the day would end with her becoming tied for the rest of her life to a man she barely knew

DPWH lines up P5 billion Bangsamoro projects for 2020

Aug 31, 2019 - 3:16 PM

Some P5.22 billion in major national infrastructure projects are lined up for 2020 for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao

Marawi crisis spokesman Zia Alonto Adiong named BTA member

Aug 20, 2019 - 12:24 PM

The Duterte administration still has to name 4 more Bangsamoro Transition Authority members, which the Bangsamoro law states must number 80

CONCERNS. Zia Alonto Adiong is pictured here with Philippine Army chief Lieutenant General Rolando Bautista and Western Mindanao chief Lieutenant General Arnel Dela Vega. Photo by Carmela Fonbuena/Rappler

[OPINION] 'Ikaw ang unang Muslim na nakilala ko'

Aug 12, 2019 - 8:39 AM

I am positive that we can become a nation that can rise beyond the idea that we should all be similar, and that we need to change those who do not fit our standards

Baguio Muslims and Catholics stand together against terrorism

Aug 11, 2019 - 12:53 PM

(UPDATED) The Muslim community in Baguio says terrorism has no religion and no place in the city

STANDING TOGETHER. Baguio Muslims and Catholics stand together against terrorism on Sunday, August 11. Photo by Mau Victa/Rappler

Robredo prays for Marawi refugees on Eid’l Adha

Aug 11, 2019 - 11:32 AM

'Yakapin natin sila at patuloy na ipanalangin sa kanilang pagharap sa mga hamon ng buhay,' says Vice President Leni Robredo on residents displaced by the Marawi siege

ANGAT BUHAY BENEFICIARY. Vice President Leni Robredo leads the turnover of classroom buildings to 3 schools in Marawi City on June 28, 2019. File photo by OVP

2 million Muslim hajj pilgrims scale Mount Arafat

Aug 10, 2019 - 8:14 PM

Two million Muslims converge outside Mecca as officials safeguard the gathering to prevent deadly stampedes that happened in previous years

HAJJ. Muslim pilgrims pray outside the Namirah mosquee at Mount Arafat, also known as Jabal al-Rahma (Mount of Mercy), southeast of the Saudi holy city of Mecca, as the climax of the Hajj pilgrimage approaches on August 10, 2019. Photo by Fethi Belaid/AFP

More than 2 million Muslims begin hajj pilgrimage

Aug 09, 2019 - 11:06 PM

The hajj consists of a series of religious rites which are completed over 5 days in Islam's holiest city and its surroundings in western Saudi Arabia

PRAYERS. Mulism pilgrims gather around the Kaaba, Islam's holiest shrine, at the Grand Mosque in Saudi Arabia's holy city of Mecca on August 8, 2019, prior to the start of the annual Hajj pilgrimage in the holy city. Photo by Fethi Belaid/AFP

Duterte to issue executive order for BTA to exploit Liguasan Marsh

Aug 09, 2019 - 5:26 PM

The Bangsamoro Transition Authority can only initiate the exploration for natural gas and oil in Liguasan Marsh through an executive order, says Interim Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte shares a light moment with Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Interim Chief Minister Al Haj Murad Ebrahim on the sidelines of the inauguration of BARMM at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in Cotabato City on March 29, 2019. Also in the photo is Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Carlito Galvez Jr. KARL NORMAN ALONZO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Murad encourages 'pro-people, pro-environment' mining in Bangsamoro

Aug 09, 2019 - 4:16 PM

The results of an ongoing mining audit will be the basis of a 'responsible mining' law in the new region, says Bangsamoro Interim Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Chair Al Hadj Murad Ebrahim delivers a message during the launching of the Bangsamoro Transition Commission at the Waterfront Insular Hotel in Davao City on February 24, 2017. RENE LUMAWAG/Presidential Photo

BTA targets Bangsamoro gov't codes by end of 2019

Aug 08, 2019 - 8:00 PM

The Bangsamoro Interim Cabinet will draft the codes and submit them to the Parliament for deliberation in early October

Rappler Screenshot

Bangsamoro barangays to get boost in education, health services in 2019

Aug 08, 2019 - 5:07 PM

The Bangsamoro Transition Authority plans to use P30 billion in unprogrammed funds meant for the implementation of the Bangsamoro law to address high student dropout rates and lack of health workers

a Maranao infant gets his vaccines in a makeshift health center in Sarimanok tent citu in Marawi City. Many displaced Maranao, vicitms of the Marawi Siege n 2017 are hopeful that the Bangsamoro Organic Law will bring in more stability in their province which are plague with clan feud, political and armed problems for decades. The core Bangsamoro Region will vote on Monday, January 21, to ratify the Bangsamoro Organic Law. (bobby lagsa/rappler)

Around 50 lawmakers attend Lakas-CMD dinner at Arroyo's house

Aug 08, 2019 - 1:40 PM

While Lakas-CMD did not actively recruit members during the gathering, two lawmakers took their oath as new members of the party

LAKAS GETTING STRONGER. Lakas-CMD president and House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez (3rd from L) administer the oath of their new members Representatives Fredenil Castro (center) and Fidel Nograles (4th from R) on August 7, 2019. Photo from Romualdez's office

Rappler Talk: BARMM Interior Minister Naguib Sinarimbo on Bangsamoro updates

Aug 08, 2019 - 11:13 AM

The Bangsamoro Transition Authority is in office, but what now?

Bangsamoro parliament bats for Dimaampao as next SC justice

Jul 30, 2019 - 11:45 AM

Marawi-born CA Justice Japar Dimaampao is being pushed to become only the 2nd Muslim SC justice in history

SC APPLICANT. Court of Appeals Justice Japar Dimaampao is shortlisted to replace Supreme Court Associate Justice Mariano Del Castillo. PTV Screenshot

Duterte, Murad agree to form intergovernmental relations body

Jul 12, 2019 - 11:56 AM

Bangsamoro Interim Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim says the BTA is ready to name its members for the body

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte shares a light moment with Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) Interim Chief Minister Al Haj Murad Ebrahim on the sidelines of the inauguration of BARMM at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex in Cotabato City on March 29, 2019. Also in the photo is Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Carlito Galvez Jr. KARL NORMAN ALONZO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Murad agrees with Piñol designation as Duterte's BARMM 'point man'

Jul 11, 2019 - 6:21 PM

President Rodrigo Duterte says Bangsamoro Interim Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim expressed his agreement with Manny Piñol's designation duing a meeting in Malacañang

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte discusses matters with Moro Islamic Liberation Front Chairman Murad Ebrahim during the Eid'L Fitr Celebration at the Rizal Hall in Malacañan Palace on June 27, 2017. TOTO LOZANO/PRESIDENTIAL PHOTO

Piñol not popular among Bangsamoro people – BTA chief Murad

Jul 09, 2019 - 2:35 PM

Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol is seen as 'very anti-Bangsamoro struggle for self-determination' by many people in the new region, says BTA Interim Chief Minister Murad Ebrahim

Secreatary Manny Pinol during the Senate hearing on the 2019 budget of the Department of Agriculture and its attached agency on October 4, 2018. Photo by Angie de Silva/Rappler

Duterte at midterm gets high grades for keeping Mindanao promise

Jul 06, 2019 - 10:00 AM

Thanks to President Rodrigo Duterte, the new Bangsamoro region is in place and the Mindanao promise is on track. His challenge in the next 3 years is to make sure that BARMM delivers on its promises.

CELEBRATION. Hundreds of Marawi City residents gather at the Mindanao State University’s Marawi campus to celebrate Eid'l Fitr on June 5, 2019, despite the delayed rehabilitation of the conflict-ravaged city. Photo by Martin San Diego/Rappler

Italy keen on supporting Bangsamoro farm sector

Jul 03, 2019 - 4:05 PM

The Italian government is interested in funding development programs for farming and fisheries in the Bangsamoro region, as well as the construction of rural roads and even river dredging

NEW INVESTOR. A delegation composed of the Italian government and private financing firms told Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol their intention to help develop the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao. Photo by Larry Nuestro/DA-AFID)

ICC prosecutor seeks full Myanmar atrocities probe

Jun 26, 2019 - 9:06 PM

Fatou Bensouda will now 'submit a request for an authorization to open an investigation into this situation,' the Hague-based International Criminal Court says in a statement

FULL PROBE. Young Rohingya refugees girls peep out from a makeshift shelter at Balukhali refugee camp in Ukhia on February 4, 2019. File photo by Munir Uz Zaman/AFP