Tacurong City – “There were no bandits in that place, referring to Sitio Mantisao where armed clashes took place on Thursday, May 18. The community is MILF controlled area,” Von Al Haqq, Spokesperson of BIAF-MILF told luwaran.com. 

Rejecting aid from the European Union could cut support to peace-building programs in Mindanao like livelihood assistance in Moro Islamic Liberation Front camps and the delivery of basic services to conflict-affected communities, Philstar reports says on May 19.

Muslim religious leaders (MRL) in the Southern Philippine Region of Mindanao said they would help "reform" members of the Abu Sayyaf terror group who have surrendered to authorities, UCANews said in its May 16 report.

Muslim Clerics and Aleema in Southern Philippines attended an Ulama Summit against Terrorism held at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex, ORC Compound, Cotabato City from May 12-14, 2017.

COTABATO CITY ----- Union of Muslim Youth Organizations (UMYO) in collaboration with Inter-School Muslim Organization (ISMO-Davao), Integrated Muslim Youth Federation (IMYF-Davao), Tacurong Muslim Youth Society (TMYS-Tacurong City) and Muslim Student Organization (Notre Dame of Marvel University-Koronadal City ) conducted a Pre-Ramadhan Symposium with the theme “Kaya Mo ba ang Forever (Can you do the forever)?” on May 15, 2017 at the Shariff Kabunsuan Cultural Complex, ORC Compound, Cotabato City.

With the theme “Unity, Solidarity for Dignified and Just Peace”, the North Cotabato Provincial Committee organized a one-day Leaders’ Assembly at Magatos, Kabacan, Cotabato on May 14, 2017.

The historic ties between the Philippines particularly Mindanao and Indonesia have been revived and strengthened anew. This came about by the recent agreement between Philippine President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and Indonesian President Joko Widodo to open up a new shipping route, which links the Philippine cities of Davao and General Santos to the Indonesian province of North Sulawesi.

The wars on drugs and violent radicalism in Mindanao by the administration of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte are yielding positive development. With some qualifications, these campaigns deserve the support of everyone. We cannot imagine a country full of drug addicts and extremists!        

In a speech during the Philippine-Qatar Business Forum, held in Doha, Qatar on April 15, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte reiterated again his promise to address the historical injustice committed against the Bangsamoro people, and, without saying, to set up a genuine self-governing Bangsamoro political entity, something higher and better than the current Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

It is good news to hear that the Duterte administration is pouring at least P21 million for the planting of bamboo and mangrove in the 288,000-hectare Liguasan Marsh. By modest standard, the money is too small but as a starting point, it is more than enough.  

Forty eight days to go before May 18, the timeline unilaterally set by the government for the Bangsamoro Transition Commission (BTC) to come up with new Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL). This timeline, while it is ideally sound, may not be too practical. This can only happen if the other side of inclusivity will work  wonder for the BTC; if not, even the adoption of internal rules, committees assignment, and which draft to use as working draft may take some time.

The ideological and political lines determine the conduct of revolutionary struggles and their objectives. This is the reason that one revolutionary group may differ from others. For instance, communist-led struggle always call for the overthrow of existing government, replace its system, as well as those running the state. In the case of MILF, we do not seek to overthrow the government in Manila, change its system, and replace its workers. All what is desired is to allow us freely to exercise our right to self-determination. And clearly that desire for now is overwhelmingly for the establishment of a genuine self-governing and autonomous entity in the Bangsamoro. 

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Water Front Hotel, Davao City. February 24, 2017

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte, the first Mindanaoan President of the Republic, Secretary Jesus “Jess” Dureza, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process,

Members of the Cabinet and other officials of Government, Local Governments, Excellences of the Diplomatic Corps, Members of the MILF Central Committee and fellow mujahedeen, Brothers from the MNLF, Traditional Leaders, Sectoral Leaders, CSO’s, Media, Distinguished Guests; Brothers, sisters, friends, ladies and gentlemen, Let me extend to you our fraternal greetings of peace,

GENERAL SANTOS CITY, March 8, 2017 – In “Good! Enough? In All Honesty …” (COMMENT: MindaNews, February 22, 23 and 26), we said the New BTC (Bangsamoro Transition Commission) could craft a new Bangsamoro basic law and present it to President Rodrigo R. Duterte by July 24, 2017 for submission to the Congress if the New BTC were the only body to draft the basic law as mandated by Executive Order No. 08, s. 2017. However, three situations could complicate the drafting. 

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