PRRD not ready yet to resume talks with NPA
MANILA (Philippines News Agency) — President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday said he was not ready yet to resume peace negotiations with the New People’s Army (NPA) despite series of mass surrenders of its members.
“Not at this time,” President Duterte replied when asked by the media if he is now considering resumption of peace talks with Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP-NPA) during his event in Balo-i, Lanao del Norte.
President Duterte explained that along the mass surrenders “is also the ferocity of those fighting” the government troops.
“I cannot do anything. They’re fighting government. They’re killing the soldiers and policemen. So my order is also to kill them,” he said.
The Commander-in-Chief said he ordered the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) to reconfigure the movement of its forces.
“I said, we have to reinvent the doctrine there on detachment-detachment on the highway. As soon as I realized they were far away, they knew how to sniper. My soldiers are knocking down, just standing there in the detachment,” he said.
More than 1,000 NPA rebels, many of them from Mindanao, have surrendered to the government this year but the number still failed to impress President Duterte.
“I am not satisfied by the numbers of surrenderees,” the President said.
President Duterte has recently hosted two batches of NPA rebel returnees in Malacanang this month.
In November last year, the President signed Proclamation No. 360 formally terminating the peace negotiations with the National Democratic Front-CPP-NPA.
The proclamation cited the failure of the communist rebels to show “sincerity and commitment” to pursue genuine peace negotiations with the government. (PNA)