Duterte cancels talks, tells Reds to go back to prison

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PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte on Saturday canceled peace talks with the communists and told rebels leaders negotiating with the government to return to the Philippines and go back to prison.

Duterte said he was not ready to resume talks with the communists as he expressed exasperation at the rebel groups’ demand that he release 400 detained rebels.

“I’m not ready to talk about anything. I know them already. My position on the peace talks [getting cancelled]will not change anymore unless there is a compelling [reason]. But it will always be in the interest of the people. If I feel that there is a joke somewhere, I will not waste my time,” Duterte told reporters in Davao City.

The President stressed he would not compromise the integrity of the government by releasing all detained rebels.


“You don’t release political prisoners because they committed a crime…We started with 18 and we came up with 23 leaders and now it’s 400. If that’s the case let’s just surrender, no pardon, no amnesty, no anything,” Duterte said.

“Those released by the government should return to prison in their own volition. Those released to participate in the talks should return and face jurisdiction of the government because they are still criminals. I’m alerting all from the intelligence community to keep track of where they are now,” he added.

According to the President, all freed communist leaders would be imprisoned without bail. Their passports will also be cancelled.

“They are all in the wanted list so I will alert the international police to arrest them where they are because they are wanted here. I’ll cancel their passports,” Duterte said.

“I don’t know if they will be granted asylum there but with the rebellion, if you are just a member, it’s not a grave offense, maybe. But leaders, they should be in prison without bail,” he added.

In January, the government and the communist National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) ended a third round of peace talks in Rome without a bilateral ceasefire agreement, but both sides said their separate unilateral ceasefire declarations would remain.

The NDFP’s armed wing, the New People’s Army, however, announced on Wednesday the termination of their unilateral ceasefire effective February 10, citing Duterte’s failure to release all detained rebels.

Duterte on Friday refused to give in to the rebels’ demand and lifted the ceasefire on the part of the government, calling on the Armed Forces of the Philippines to “be ready to fight.”
The President’s decision came after NPA attacks that killed six soldiers. The rebels also abducted three government troopers.

Both sides had agreed to resume peace talks on February 22 in the Netherlands, to try to hammer out a bilateral ceasefire agreement.

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10 Comments

  1. Tama lang ang ginawa ng Presidente may uasapan na nga na bumalik ang mga yan sa poder ng gobyerno eh ayaw parin nila at masyado ang demand nila tuloy nalang na hulihin ang mga yan at ikulong..

  2. The NPA’s are making impossible demands for peace. One time they demanded the imprisonment of Estrade as their condition for peace, evading the due process law in the constitution. Thanks that we have a tough talking President who is determined to apply the full force of the law against them. This talk and fight — as proposed by some people — is useless. There was no peace talk when Marcos was President because the NPA’s failed to meet the minimum conditions of peace negotiations. The People’s Power government tried it but it lead to nowhere. So what’s the use of talking. Just a waste of time. President Duterte is right in saying that all release NPAs should be thrown back into prison.

  3. Cancel all issued safe conduct passes (SCP) to the supposed NDF consultants. These criminals are taking advantage of the SCPs to roam freely and consolidate their forces.

  4. At least, you tried. No use telling now, we told you so. On the plus side though, you gained the moral upperhand while the communists have lost whatever is left of public sympathy.

  5. Leodegardo M. Pruna on

    Who would not feel exasperated? Pres. Duterte is right and taking the right steps in the right direction for the good of the country and its people. The leaders of the left are abusing the magnanimity of the President by asking beyond what is reasonable for an intelligent and reasonable talk to be grounded on. The people of the Philippines are behind you Mr. President Mayor.Duterte. God bless the Philippines.

  6. Tuloy ang laban sa NPA. Noon panahon, malakas ang puersa ng mga NPA /CPP dahil matindi ang kurapsyon sa hanay ng militar at PNP. Ang supply ng mga sundalong naka talaga sa field o sa firing line gaya ng pagkain ay kinukurap ng nasa itaas kaya tuyo at kanin na lang.. Kulang kulang ang ammunitions o mga gamit pang digma. Butas butas ang mga sapatos ng mga sundalo at higit sa lahat mababa ang moral. Hinidi talaga magwawagi ang mga sundalo ng Gobyerno. Walang pangil ang Kumander in Chief gaya ni Gloria Arroyo at Benigno Aquino.. Ngayon, Ibang panahon. Nabawasan ang kurapsyon sa militar at napurga ang mga scalawags sa PNP. May hatak pa at mando ang Commander in Chief Duterte. Maniwala kayo. Iba ang dagok ngayon sa mga NPA. Kaya laban na kung ayaw ng kabila. Ang mga Pilipino nakita na kung sino talaga ang ayaw ng kapayapan.

  7. Hindi naman siguro masasabing maramot ang Presidente dahil pinagbigyan naman niya yong mga naunang kahilingan para masimulan ang usapang kapayapaan. Dapat yong NDF/CPP at NPA magbigay din hindi pweding isang panig lang ang nagbibigay. Siguro naman kung nakamit na ang hangad na kapayapaan walang dahilan para hindi palayain ang sinasabing 400 bilangong politikal. Eh kung magbibigayan at makamit ang kapayapan eh di MABUHAY ANG SAMBAYANANG PILIPINO.

  8. kale alaskador on

    So be it! It is useless to talk peace to a group that does not even state what it is fighting for! The government cannot just release those so called political prisoners because they are not! They are criminals. This so-called CPP/NDF group is composed of different criminal groups who take advantage of citizens who are made to pay “revolutionary” taxes which in common term is called robbery or blackmail! They are plain bandits!

  9. A good political leader need not believe in God. After all, his job is just to rule the people in their “physical life” for the common good, sans spiritual salvation.

    But God has His counsel. Let us listen:

    Proverbs 11:3 The INTEGRITY of the UPRIGHT shall guide them (him): but the perverseness of transgressors shall destroy them.

    The leader, however, may be guided with this kind word of God:

    Psalms_7:8 The Lord SHALL JUDGE the people: JUDGE ME, O LORD, according to my righteousness, and according to mine integrity that is in me.

    Let the people be guided accordingly.