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Philippine Army reaches out for peace dialogue with rebels

A DIALOGUE for the permanent and peaceful closure of all armed-conflicts at the regional level of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) is now at the forefront by the military hierarchy in the region.

While pertinent government agencies are talking peace, the Army's 3rd Infantry (Spearhead) Division (3ID) will start an all-out effort to reach out for a dialogue with the CPP in Western Visayas.

Major General Jose Z. Mabanta Jr., 3ID commander said, "We at the lower echelon of government see that it is essential to have a dialogue with the Communist Party of the Philippines, the New People's Army and the National Democratic Front (CPP/NPA/NDF)."

"While we continue to adhere to agreements and talks entered into by the government, 3ID together with peace advocates in this region of the country, believe that among us, the Army and the CPP/NPA/NDF, at our level here in Western Visayas, there should be an effort of the same kind of dialogue. A would be bottom-up approach of looking for answers to the challenges of the nation's human security."

"As we do a parallel effort with the national government to restart peace talks with the CPP/NPA/NDF, we will continue with our mandate of protecting the citizens of this region, employing military capabilities only when necessitated by the security situation," added Mabanta.

"With the snowballing call for peace as advocated by the majority in this region, we call on the CPP/NPA/NDF for a dialogue. Our immediate concern is to how non-combatants should be spared from armed conflict," he said.

"Together with our partners in the Army, we wish to pursue peaceful means towards attaining a settlement with the CPP/NPA/NDF and bring peace for the people. It's time to sit down and look for better ways to address socio- economic issues," he said. 

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Teresa Ellera | SunStar.Com.Ph | June 5, 2012 | Article Link

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