• Govt, MILF sign decommissioning pact

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    THE government and Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) peace panels on Friday signed the 10-page implementing guidelines for the decommissioning of weapons and fighters of the secessionist group, five days after these same firearms killed 44 elite police officers in Mamasapano town in Maguindanao province.

    “Standing by their commitment to achieve the objectives of the normalization process, the [p]arties finalized and signed the [p]rotocol on the Implementation of the Terms of Reference of the Independent Decommissioning Body (IDB),” the Joint Statement issued by panel heads Miriam Coronel-Ferrer and Mohagher Iqbal in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, said.

    The IDB is the recent addition to the set of mechanisms that will implement the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB).

    It is responsible for supervising and monitoingr the decommissioning process.

    According to the agreed protocol, the IDB will conduct inventory, verification and validation of members, arms and weapons of the Bangsamoro Islamic Armed Forces (BIAF); develop and implement  schedule of decommissioning of BIAF members; and plan, design and implement techniques and technologies for weapons collection or retrieval, transport and storage and putting weapons beyond use in accordance with the agreements of the parties.

    MILF combatants and weapons will be processed and registered in four batches and in several Assembly and Processing Areas (APAs).

    The collected weapons will be placed in secured containers in guarded storage areas until such time that these are put permanently beyond use.

    The decommissioning will be done in four phases.

    Under Phase 1, a  ceremonial turning in of 75 high-powered weapons will signal the actual start of the process.

    By the time of ratification of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law, 30 percent of MILF weapons and combatants would have been decommissioned.

    Another 35 percent will follow under Phase 3 and the balance, under Phase 4.

    The IDB is also designated  to ensure that the parties comply with all necessary steps and processes for the decommissioning.

    The protocol was a product of three months of deliberations between the parties and the IDB.

    It drew from international standards established in the course of implementing the decommissioning of combatants and weapons in different parts of the world such as in Nepal, Northern Ireland and Aceh, according to Ferrer.

    Responding to public clamor for the MILF to prove its commitment and sincerity in abiding by signed agreements, the two parties agreed to discuss measures that they would undertake in order to jointly quell criminality and terrorism in affected Mindanao communities.

    “In accordance with the statements made by President [Benigno] Aquino [3rd] and Chair[man]Murad in relation to this tragic incident, the Parties reaffirmed their commitment to the attainment of peace that has long eluded Mindanao. In this vein, they resolved to strengthen their cooperation and coordination in addressing security concerns in the most effective and appropriate manner, and also in rebuilding trust and public confidence in the peace process,” the Joint Statement said.

    The parties also expressed “deep sympathy and grief for the loss of lives in the early morning [incident]of January 25, 2015 in Mamasapano, Maguindanao”  and pledged support for investigations being conducted by the government’s Board of Inquiry and the MILF’s Special Investigative Commission.

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    4 Comments

    1. Show me one statement where it guarantees that the MILF no longer can get their weapons. This is a farce. Do not negotiate with terrorists.

    2. MILF will never surrender their good weapons,yong mga bulok ang isusurender nila this another scam by Deles,Ferrer and Igbal,Why do they go to Malaysia for this because the Bangsamoro is own by Malaysia.Deles and Ferrer soldout the government they should be arrested for treason.

    3. Decommissioning of arms is rather too late, this should have been done long before they work for the peace process they pretend to desire. Like Pres Ramos said, those two women should have consulted those retired military officers who had known how brutal and insincere they could be, who has all the military experience in Mindanao.Those radicals Islamists they pretend to be nice while they mix with others to gain confidence of the people(that’s what the 911 worldtrade center terrorists did ), yet they have another motive or hidden agenda. Wonder how much those two women are getting from those terrorists and this administration, in implementing the so called questionable BBL ?

    4. This decommissioning pact will only be a sham. This exercise was done during the Marcos administration, Cory administration, Fidel administration but continue to fail. We already know that Muslims in Southern Philippines treat their weapons more than their wives. What will happen is the weapons the Muslims will surrender are Springfield rifles, Garands and old revolvers. It happened before, it will happen agains