MANILA - The Philippine government should withdraw its petition to declare communist rebels as terrorists if it wants to resume peace negotiations, a United Nations special rapporteur said Monday.
Backing down on such efforts will be an "act of good faith," said UN special rapporteur on the rights of indigenous peoples Victoria Tauli-Corpuz. She is among 600 individuals that the justice department wants a court to declare as terrorists.
Tauli-Corpuz earlier branded allegations linking her to the communist rebellion as "baseless and malicious."
"I would assume if the peace talks are going to be resumed then the first action that should be taken is to withdraw this petition because that is an act of good faith, that you are indeed willing to resume peace negotiations," she told ANC Early Edition.
Last week, President Rodrigo Duterte instructed his Cabinet to work on the resumption of peace talks with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines in a bid to give it "another last chance."