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MILF commends PNoy for rejecting war

Posted at | Updated as of 10/26/11 7:01 AM

MANILA, Philippines - President Aquino has again won over the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) after he refused to declare an all-out war against the MILF despite the killing of 19 soldiers in an encounter in Al-Barka town in Basilan last week.

In a statement on the Luwaran website, MILF vice-chairman for political affairs Ghazali Jaafar said the MILF is convinced of the sincerity and political will of President Aquino to "forge a comprehensive, just, enduring and honorable negotiated political solution to the problem in Mindanao and the Bangsamoro issue."

“The Central Committee of the MILF under the leadership of Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim commended His Excellency President Aquino for standing firm for the continuity and succesful conclusion of the GPH [Philippine government] – MILF Peace Process,” Jaafar said.

The MILF official backed Aquino's decision to reject an all-out war against the MILF and the Bangsamoro people.

He also conveyed the condolences of the MILF to the bereaved families of the officers and soldiers of the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP).

“We feel as much grief with the families of the fallen soldiers of both the government and MILF forces," he said.

Jaafar said the encounter in Al-Barka last week was "unwarranted, unfortunate and should not have happened in the first place."

"Both the MILF and the government did not want these incidents to happen,” he said.

He pointed out that the established ceasefire mechanisms such as the GPH – MILF Coordinating Committees on the Cessation of Hostitlties (CCCH), GPH – MILF Adhoc Joint Action Group (AHJAG), Local Monitoring Teams (LMTs), and the International Monitoring Team (IMT) must be allowed to function in order to resolve the cases within their mandates peacefully.