Hopes are high that one of the world’s longest-running civil conflicts can be resolved in the Philippines. The newly-elected president must act on his commitment to the outgoing administration’s promise of autonomy for the southern Bangsamoro (Muslim Nation) population. Failure to do so risks more lawlessness or reigniting the insurgency.
01 July 2016
Govt peace negotiator Silvestre Bello met mid-June with exiled National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) communist leaders in Oslo, 15 June signed agreement to formally resume peace talks ...
The Philippines has had some recent success in winding down decades-long negotiations with rebel groups, but achieving peace with the country’s biggest insurgency, in Mindanao, requires both new energy and fresh thinking.
The next round of talks between the Philippines’ largest Muslim insurgent group and the government is a crucial step towards implementing a sweeping peace agreement signed in October.
Politics in the Sulu archipelago could be an unforeseen stumbling block for a negotiated peace with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in the southern Philippines.
The Philippine government and Muslim rebels need to take concrete steps to address the precarious situation of indigenous peoples, known as the Lumad, to secure their support for the peace process on the southern island of Mindanao.
The Philippine government is experimenting with a creative but risky new strategy to resolve the conflict in Mindanao.
The success of peace talks between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) will depend on each side convincing the other that it has the will and capacity to deliver – and both have doubts.
Peace talks beginning tomorrow in Oslo may be the best hope in years for halting an insurgency that has prevented development in large parts of the Philippines.
Whatever the outcome of the Philippine elections on 10 May, the new government should make Mindanao a priority, devoting serious attention to the peace process, the dissolution of private armies and justice for the 2009 Maguindanao massacre.
The massacre on 23 November 2009 of 57 men and women by the private army of a warlord allied to Philippine President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo shocked the country and the world.
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