Interfaith dialogue vs. ‘spoilers’ of Mindanao peace set in Cotabato (Philippines)
an article by AMITA O. LEGASPI, GMA News
To ensure that there will be real reconciliation
in Mindanao following the signing of the Comprehensive Agreement
on the Bangsamoro, Muslim and Christian religious and political
leaders are set to meet over the weekend to discuss and promote
the culture of peace.
Young people at a peace camp in Cotabato
click on photo to enlarge
European Union (EU) Ambassador Guy Ledoux said the peace
conference, to be held on June 6 to 7 in Cotabato, will be a way to
ensure that “there is no opportunity for spoilers to damage” the
benefits brought by the historic signing of CAB.
At a press conference Tuesday, Ledoux said the peace conference
“is one way to ensure that the people on the ground are still
committed to peace.” "There have been scars because of the
decades-old war and scars need to be healed,” he said.
The conference is convened by Cotabato Archbishop Orlando
Cardinal Quevedo with the Community of Sant'Egidio of Italy and in
cooperation with Muhammadiyah from Indonesia.
Some 200 to 400 people are expected to attend the conference,
entitled “Peace is Living Together Religions and Cultures in Dialogue
for Peace and Reconciliation in Mindanao.”
Expected to attend are national and local government officials, as
well as those from Moro Islamic Liberation Front, Moro National
Liberation Front, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, Mindanao
universities, diplomats, and non-government organizations from
the Philippines and other countries.
Some 1,000 youths are also expected to join the event.
Alberto Quattrucci, secretary general of Peoples and Religions,
Community of Sant'Egidio, said they will give everyone a chance to
talk. "Dialogue is important, it is essential protection from war.
When the voice of dialogue is interrupted, the voice of knives starts.
People are very tired of war,” he said
Question(s) related to this article:
What is the latest update on the peace situation in Mindanao?,
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LATEST READER COMMENT:
The agreement of October 15 2012 has given rise to optimism, but many problems remain. For a typical analysis see that of The Economist.
The Philippines' Southern Insurgency
It could be peace
Hopes grow for an end to a bloody and long-running insurgency
AFTER 16 years of on-and-off negotiations, the Philippines government and the main Muslim rebel group in the southern region of Mindanao, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, agreed to the outlines of a peace deal on October 6th. The two sides are due to sign it formally on October 15th. If it works, which is far from guaranteed, it could bring an end to more than four decades of fighting by armed Muslims seeking independence from the mainly Christian archipelago nation. The Mindanao conflict has killed perhaps 120,000 people and displaced 2m more. Mindanao is home to most of the country’s Muslims, who make up about 5% of the population of about 100m.
The agreement is not a final peace deal, but rather what President Benigno Aquino describes as “a framework agreement” and the front calls a “road map”. Yet both sides believe that it paves the way for what Mr Aquino hopes will prove “a final, enduring peace” in Mindanao.
The peace plan envisages the establishment of an autonomous Muslim area in Mindanao, called Bangsamoro, subject to a plebiscite there. The proposed Bangsamoro will have budgetary autonomy and a just share of revenues from the extraction of southern resources; its own police force; and sharia law for Muslims only. . ...more.