Jamby, NDF call for resumption of peace talks
National, 13 October 2007 (as of 5:11 PM)
Sen. Maria Consuelo "Jamby" Madrigal on Saturday said that after meeting
with representatives of the National Democratic Front in the Netherlands
they have agreed to call for the resumption of formal peace talks between
the Philippine government and NDF.
Madrigal, in a statement, said: "The NDFP has agreed with me in a Joint
Statement executed in the Netherlands that, people should unite to
encourage the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and
NDFP to resume formal talks in their peace negotiations, address the
roots of the armed conflict, accelerate the forging of agreements and
bring about a just and lasting peace."
Furthermore, Madrigal said the NDF negotiating panel "agreed to exhaust
all efforts to reach a resolution to Asia's longest running insurgency problem
until peace is achieved."
Madrigal did not identify the representatives she met but NDF officials based
in the Netherlands include Luis T. Jalandoni, chief of the NDF negotiating
panel; Fidel V. Agcaoili, member and spokesperson of the NDF panel; Ruth
de Leon, executive director of NDF International Information Office and
Jose Ma. Sison, founding chairman of the Communist Party of the Philippines
(CPP) and chief political consultant of the NDF panel among others.
Formal talks between the government and representatives of the armed
communist movement in the Philippines bogged down in 2004. NDF officials
accused the Arroyo administration of refusing to work for the removal of the
CPP and its armed wing New People's Army from the terror listing made by
United States and other countries.
The government-NDF peace talks was also assisted by Norway acting as a
Madrigal said that as chairman of the Senate Committee on Peace, Unification
and Reconciliation she will work for resumption of the formal talks.
"I shall form a Technical Working Group to assist in hastening the resolution
of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations for the purpose of enacting remedial
legislation and to demonstrate that it is possible to produce agreements and
actually use these to accelerate the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations," said the
Madrigal also did not fail to recognize the difficulties that she may face in
trying to jump start the talks that have been suspended for more than
"I hope that the Arroyo administration and the hawks in the political and
military establishment will not condemn me for engaging in treacherous talks
with fellow Filipinos for the purpose of achieving peace," said Madrigal.
Madrigal had previously met with NDF officials in 2006 when she also inked a
joint communique that had also called for the resumption of the suspended
peace talks. She reportedly earned the ire of government security officials
for "sleeping with the enemy.
The neophyte senator however maintained her position.
"My intentions are clear - prevent further bloodshed and violence between
Filipinos," said Madrigal. "There is no substitute for peace. The time to talk
Click here to view the Joint Statement between Senator Maria Ana Consuelo "Jamby" Madrigal
and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines