MNLF affirms solidarity with MILF

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MARAWI CITY: Leaders of the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) gathered in Marawi City on Tuesday to firm up its call for passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) and to express solidarity with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

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Over a thousand people joined the Bangsamoro Walk for Peace around the city early morning of the same day and held a rally at the Banggolo Plaza in Marawi City to acknowledge peace efforts of both the MILF and the Philippine government.

Datu Abul Khayr Alonto, chairman of the MNLF, said the Bangsamoro people are looking for more peace champions to push the BBL.

While saying he appreciated the unwavering support of President Benigno Aquino 3rd to the BBL and the whole peace process with the MILF, he admitted that the President’s efforts fall short, especially with his role in the Mamasapano incident that claimed the lives of 44 Special Action Forces of the Philippine National Police, 18 MILF fighters and five civilians last January 25.

Alonto said their eyes are now focused on the Senate Committee on Local Government headed by Sen. Ferdinand Marcos Jr. after the House Ad Hoc Committee on the BBL wrapped up deliberations on the proposed law.

“But we feel comfortable with the chairmanship of Senator Marcos. We know he has compassion for the Bangsamoro people,” he added.

The BBL, Alonto said, may be last time the Bangsamoro people will agree to negotiating autonomy for their homeland.

“While we need sincerity to pursue lasting peace in Mindanao, all stakeholders, especially the government, should consider the utmost necessity to settle the Bangsamoro issue and a diluted [BBL] has a price that will be too great,” he added.

Joining in Tuesday’s events were surviving original MNLF fighters known in the late 1960s and the 1970s as the Black Shirts, emissaries and representatives of the MILF, the government peace panel and the International Monitoring Team headed by its current head of mission Maj. Gen. Dato’ Sheikh Mokhsin bin Sheikh Hassan of Malaysia.

Alonto reiterated the MNLF’s solidarity with the MILF, saying they share the same cause, which is to “assert the Bangsamoro people’s right to self-determination.”

He said the MNLF and the MILF have set aside their differences and agreed to work together after he and MILF chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim signed a communiqué for cooperation at Camp Darapanan last January 5.

Alonto belittled rifts in the MNLF, saying the group remains solid but it is the government that is sowing division among its ranks.

“The government should stop dividing us. It should realize that addressing the conflict in Mindanao is more difficult if the Bangsamoro is divided,” he said.

Meanwhile, IMT Head of Mission Maj. Gen. Dato said he is happy with the progress in the peace process, despite setbacks caused by the Mamasapano incident.

Overall, he added, with ceasefire mechanisms in place, proper coordination between the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the Philippine National Police and the MILF have prevented violent confrontations.

“We have seen how MILF fighters move out of their positions to give way to government operations,” Dato said.

Peace, he added, “should be cherished by the Filipino people.”

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5 Comments

  1. Samuel Carlon on

    Datu Abul Khayr Alonto is not the chairman of MNLF, he is on the list of MNLF expelled or blacklisted member. MNLF is not acknowledging him as their Chairman, Prof. Nur Misuari is still the original Chairman and leader of MNLF.

  2. Eddie de Leon on

    This is only the pro-Aquino Maranao boss who has arrogated the MNLF to himself. This is not the stand of the MLF of Nur Misuari and the Tausugs and Samals.

  3. Let all groups, tribes, political parties, big families, clans, and all with interest in the peace of the whole Mindanao such as the MNLF; the ASG; BIFF, the big Muslim family group; like the Dimaporos, Sinsuats, Laos, Santos, Romeros, the different non-muslim tribes as the Tausugs, Maranaws, Bila-ans, Badjaos; the Subanons; the Ampatuans, Mangudadatus and all within the island of Mindanao.with the participations of all then peace could be attained especially most people are inclined to be selfish and greedy. With the government best intentions and cooperations of all in the populations, wealth in the region could be utilized and contentment assured. With all this intentions then, while we breath we hope.Good Luck to all.

  4. @@@@@@@@@@@@ linisin nyo muna ung bakuran nyo bago kayo ,,,,bgo kau manghingi pa na mas malawak na lugar @@@@@@@@@222