• NPA not ready to negotiate peace: Palace

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    The New People’s Army (NPA) is not ready to sign a peace deal with the government, a Malacanang official said Saturday.
    Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda made the comment a day after the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) announced that the communist armed group remains a threat to national security.
    “The government remains open in pursuing peace talks with them, but the conditions that they’ve created, which is the issuance of JASIG pass to their consultants, is something that we cannot comply because there is no basis for such list [of consultants,” Lacierda said.
    JASIG is the joint agreement on safety and immunity guarantees signed by the two parties in 1995.
    The National Democratic Front (NBF) is the political arm of the Communist Party of the Philippines-NPA.
    Lacierda said the communist camp was asked for a list of its consultants, but instead of giving a list, but instead it led the government officials to a safe that held a floppy disk supposedly containing the list.
    The disk, however, was not functioning.
    “Since we can’t operate the floppy disk is not working, we cannot have confirmation on who are the consultants and the basis of that list. The government is ready [to negotiate], but the other camp is not yet coming to the negotiating table,” Lacierda said.
    LLANESCA T. PANTI

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