Philippines' MILF urges other groups to lay down arms

Passage of Bangsamoro Basic Law will convince other Moro rebel groups to disarm and unite, says MILF's Ghazali Jaafar

Philippines' MILF urges other groups to lay down arms

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Philippines’ largest Moro rebel group said Friday that it has started convincing other armed rebel groups in Southern Philippines to lay down their arms and unite in support for the creation of a Bangsamoro region in the country.

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Vice Chair Ghazali Jaafar said that President Rodrigo Duterte’s certification of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) as urgent early this week will persuade other rebels to disarm and participate, as after all, “they are fighting now in order to have a government for the Moro people.”

"This will convince the Maute, this will convince the BIFF [Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters], this will convince Abu Sayyaf, this will convince the other groups," Jaafar said referring to three of the rebel groups which allegedly pledged allegiance to Daesh, as quoted by ABS-CBN News.

The proposed BBL law presented to Duterte in July was transmitted to the Senate and Congress last Month. It was part of a 2014 peace agreement between the government and the MILF proposing an autonomous Bangsamoro region, replacing the existing Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Jaafar expressed confidence that enactment of the BBL is the only solution to end the prolonged conflict in Philippines' south, as it will end the reason for the fighting.

"This is the only solution... If the problem is solved, there is no reason for anybody to fight anymore...

They are also fighting because they want to have a government," he said.

Jaafar added that although the MILF disagrees with the criminal activities of the other rebel groups, it has initiated talks to stop the fighting -- efforts which have yet to be communicated to Duterte.

"Our objective is to convince them to return to the fold of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and it is an obligation, duty to talk to our brothers as Muslims in order to avoid fighting against any of them. Fighting against any of them is the most hated situation," he said.

Last Mod: 23 Eylül 2017, 23:02
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