NDFP Media Office
Press statement from NDFP Panel chair Fidel V. Agcaoili
February 2, 2017
The NDFP Negotiating Panel wishes to restate that the termination of the unilateral interim ceasefire of the CPP and NPA shall take effect at 11:59 pm on 10 February 2017 after the ten-day period from the date that it was publicly announced and duly transmitted to the GRP Panel.
On the recent skirmishes, the NPA has been on active defense mode since the 21 January incident in Makilala, North Cotabato, when one of its encampments was attacked by the AFP and PNP. Since then, however, the AFP, PNP and paramilitary forces have become more aggressive and bold in encroaching on communities and sowing fear among the people. These could have prompted the NPA to carry out active defensive operations to protect the people and their communities, as well as its forces.
With respect to the reported three prisoners-of-war (POWs) — two in Columbio, Sultan Kudarat and another in Alegria, Surigao del Sur — the NDFP shall convey immediately to the concerned NPA commands, through the NPA National Operations Command, its strong recommendation that these POWs be released as soon as possible as a measure of goodwill in the peace negotiations, once, upon due investigation, they are found not liable for any human rights violation or crime against the people and after the necessary protocols on the safety and security of the POWs, the local third party facilitators composed of religious leaders and local officials, and the NPA custodial forces are observed.
The NDFP reiterates its commitment to move forward with the peace negotiations in the scheduled fourth round of formal talks from 2 to 6 April 2017 in Oslo, Norway, including the scheduled informal discussions from 21 to 25 February 2017 in Utrecht, The Netherlands. ###
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