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OIC can save Mindanao peace talks from stalemate, says MILF

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COTABATO CITY, Philippines—The 14-year-old peace talks between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front could be saved from a looming stalemate if an influential organization of Islamic countries were to be given a stronger voice in the talks, a rebel negotiator said Wednesday.

Government chief negotiator Marvic Leonen had warned the previous day that the talks were headed for a stalemate due to disagreement on several major issues.

“We are approaching what would seem to be a stalemate in our ideas for transition as well as in our ideas of how to make permanent the solutions that work for our peoples,” he said in a statement on Tuesday.

Mohagher Iqbal, MILF chief negotiator, said the unresolved issues were vital for the success of the talks. He said this included the MILF’s demand for the expansion of the coverage of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Prof. Abhoud Syed Lingga, a member of the MILF peace panel, said Wednesday that the peace talks could be steered in the right direction by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation, formerly the Organization of the Islamic Conference.

He said that while the OIC enjoys observer status in the talks, it can contribute a lot more toward a final peace agreement given a stronger voice.

The OIC was  instrumental in the 1996 peace accord that the government signed with the Moro National Liberation Front.

Linga said the OIC could take a more active role in the talks such as suggesting possible solutions to some issues.

“The consultants are allowed to speak during the negotiations with the concurrence of the facilitator,” he said. “The involvement of the 57-member OIC led by Secretary General Prof. Ekmeleddin Ihsanuglo will increase three-fold the chances of signing an agreement between the two parties despite the rough sailing in their current negotiations.”

The next round of the talks will be held in Kuala Lumpur in April.


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Tags: Armed conflict , Foreign affairs , Mindanao , Moro Insurgency , Organization of Islamic Cooperation , Peace talks

  • Tsinito

    pera lang kasi katapat nyan. gusto lang gagatsan ang mindanao at gobyerno nyan. gusto lagi easy money ayaw magsipag trabaho

  • caster1234

    MILF leaders are greedy enough to control the whole mindanao island. Don’t trust them. They don’t want peace, they want power and control. 

  • Simon Ybarramendia

    From the beginning, the MILF demands are fundamentally unconstitutional and therefore, one cannot expect any fruit from these talks as long as the government is unwilling to amend the Philippine constitution. MILF’s “OIC talk” is just a ploy by the MILF for the OIC to abandon its link with the MNLF–which is the organization that the OIC recognizes. As an organization, OIC is fragmented and in its own members’ assessment, has failed in its role as a consensus-builder among Islamic countries.

    It is interesting to note that while OIC has been active in the peace process in Southern Philippines, it’s reaction to what is going on in Syria is lackluster. What does that tell you about its neutrality?

  • murtson

    Does the Phililppines have a government on its own? If yes, then it must decide on its own and not be diffent on outsiders. 

    If its government is not working, change its leader. 

    Let it not be gullible with the MILF suggestion in using the OIC as link to help the resolution of the peace talk. The OIC has nothing to do with an internal problem of the Philippines which is rebellion. That is why the Moro rebels are audacious because they assessed the Philippine government to be yellow and indecisive. 

    Lay down a fair and just condition and offer. and if it’s not acceptable to them, put a timetable for them to surrender, If they don’t do it, it means that their rebellion must be handled properly and appropriately till it ends. No letting up like what every president had been doing. 

    Either the people side with the government or with the rebels. No one can be neutral.

  • franklyn flores

    Kung na tapos ang termino ni Erap , malamang nag eenjoy na tayo ngayon sa mga maraming white sand beaches ng Mindanao.

  • Fulpol

    orkestrated by the US gobernent

    sino pa ang suspetsya kundi ang US

    gusto ng US ang oil and natural resourses 

    hahaha
    hahahaha3hh
    hahahah



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