World Bulletin / News Desk
Moro Muslims and the Philippine government will extend the current round of peace talks, both sides said on Friday, aiming to clinch a deal to end a four-decade old conflict.
The talks, taking place in the Malaysian capital Kuala Lumpur, are in their final stages and will be extended for at least one day, a senior government official said. Sources close to the discussions said an announcement on the outcome may not be made until Monday.
After four days, both sides said they needed time to study details of a deal that would set in train a roadmap to create an autonomous region in Muslim-majority areas of Mindanao island before the end of President Benigno Aquino's term in 2016.
"It's been extended, they are still talking at least until tomorrow and I don't know, it may be further extended," Teresita Quintos-Deles, presidential adviser on the peace process, told Reuters.
"We're already in the final stages, both sides need to do more deliberations even among themselves and their principals."
Negotiators from both panels told Reuters last month major obstacles to a framework deal being signed this year after nearly 15 years of stop-and-start talks appeared to have been surmounted after intense diplomacy.
"We certainly want to have an agreement within a more immediate time frame," Quintos-Deles said. "Both sides are being bold and cautious at the same time."
She later told reporters by mobile text message that both sides were pressing for an agreement "that we can uphold and stands the best chance to bring us the peace our people have long been hoping for and deserve".
Ghadzali Jaafar, political officer of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), separately told Reuters the talks were proceeding smoothly, with topics including power-sharing and territorial issues.
"All sides are expecting that the talks would remain smooth so that we can attain a peaceful resolution of the Mindanao conflict," he said.
An accord would set up a 15-member Transition Commission, which has until 2015 to draft a law creating the entity that will replace an autonomous region created more than two decades ago and widely seen as a failure.
More than 100,000 people have died in 40 years of conflict.
Last week, Shaimaa's 23-year-old mother arrived dead to central Gaza Strip's Deir al-Balah hospital when doctors found out that her unborn girl had still been alive inside her womb.
When the war turn into barbarism. When hospitals, disability centres , schools are not safe it is not a humanitarian crisis.
Violence in China’s far-western Xinjiang province continues as its Muslim Uighur population face religious and cultural restrictions.
Separately, U.S. lawmakers were working in Congress to provide millions of dollars in additional funding for Israel's "Iron Dome" missile shield.
The Ukranian parliament has rejected the resignation of Prime Minister Arseniy Yatsenyuk.
Twenty eight migrants, mostly Bangladeshi, were wounded when foremen at a strawberry farm opened fire on about 200 immigrant workers who were protesting for back pay in the southwestern town of Manolada in April last year.
Corey Robin, a Jewish professor of political science at Brooklyn College and a longtime critic of Israel, was also arrested at the protest.
The government increased fuel prices after spending about $3 billion on energy subsidies last year, nearly a third of state revenue.
Pro-Russian separatists in eastern Ukraine intend to take part in talks with Moscow, Kiev and the OSCE security and rights organisation in Belarus.
“We brought dolls to refer to the children of Gaza,” Neta Golan, a spokesperson for the group, told Anadolu Agency outside the court.
France, the Philippines and the U.S. also decided to pull out staff this week.
The United Nations relief agency’s Commissioner General Pierre Krahenbuhl condemned the killing children in their sleep.
In the absence of a deal, Israel has ordered its ground forces to focus on locating and destroying a warren of tunnels.
To get aid into Gaza, Iran has to fly it to Egypt and then take it across the Rafah border crossing. The only other option would be to go through Israel, unthinkable for Iran.
A joint rescue team is searching for those missing after a fishing vessel capsized with 48 on board in North Sumatra.
It is likely that the losses sustained by Morganti Development LLC, which owns a stake in the Gaza power plant, will be paid for by U.S. taxpayers, who ironically also help fund the Israeli army.