MILF says if violence breaks out, gov’t will be blamed

“Though it can be possible, MILF does not hope for that. But if it will happen, the government will be blamed for being insincere in the talks,” MILF chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal, said in a text message.
    
Earlier, Bantay Ceasefire (Ceasefire Watch), a grassroots-bsaed W blasted Malacañang’s decision to “accept and respect" Malaysia’s “phased withdrawal" of its troops from the International Monitoring Team (IMT), saying “such decision is like condemning civilians in Mindanao back to war and displacement."

Secretary Jesus Dureza, presidential adviser to the peace process, in a statement Sunday said the government appreciates the help of the Malaysians in the peace process “and we respect and accept their decision."

Dureza took a jab at the media saying, “Malacañang took exceptions to press allegations blaming the government for the slow pace in the peace negotiations resulting to the withdrawal of the Malaysians from the ceasefire monitoring team".

“The government while committed to push the peace process forward is not delaying but doing due diligence in completing the government’s final draft of the ancestral domain agreement to ensure that it is implementable and defensible from attacks of unconstitutionality," Dureza said.

But lawyer Maryann Arnado, secretary general of the Mindanao Peoples’ Caucus, said “how could Dureza just accept the pull-out of IMT?"

“His job is to ensure that the negotiations [move] toward peaceful resolution. Accepting such decision is like condemning civilians in Mindanao back to war and displacement," Arnado said.

The Bantay Ceasefire in a statement called on the Malaysian-led IMT to reconsider its decision to pullout its troops from the international peace monitor. (Antonio Manaytay/MindaNews)

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