Duterte says up to next President on peace talks with Reds

Job Manahan, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 06 2022 05:09 PM | Updated as of May 06 2022 05:10 PM

Duterte says up to next President on peace talks with Reds
Agence France-Presse/File

MANILA — It is up to the next president whether the government will pursue another round of peace talks with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), President Rodrigo Duterte has said. 

Duterte urged the next Chief Executive to "just support the military". 

"It depends if the President, whoever he or she may be, basta suportahan lang niya ang military at bigyan lang, kailangan, just like what I did years ago," Duterte told his spiritual adviser Pastor Apollo Quiboloy in a taped interview.

Duterte formally announced the end of the government's peace negotiations with communist rebels in March 2019 amid alleged attacks by the NPA on government troops while talks were being held.

Duterte urged law enforcement authorities to continue their fight against terrorism, vowing to even protect them when human rights issues arise. 

"Pero kung sabihin mo go out and hunt them down that is your duty as a law enforcement officer or a military fighting the rebels. Huwag kayo matakot, basta ang kaso niyo in connection with the performance of official duty, I will, kakapotehan kita," he said.

Under his term, Duterte approved the creation of the National Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (NTF-ELCAC) and signed the controversial Anti-Terrorism Law

The Anti-Terrorism Council had tagged the CPP-NPA as "terrorists."

NTF-ELCAC, which was initially formed to attain peace-building initiatives in conflict areas, has repeatedly red-tagged several personalities — including journalists, lawyers, and celebrities.

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