The Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) – an armed movement that had been fighting for decades for a separate State in Mindanao – have announced that they have cleared the last obstacles to the signing of a Comprehensive Peace Agreement. This closes a period of 16 years of negotiations and paves the way for greater autonomy for the Bangsamoro people. Geneva Call would like to congratulate all those who have been involved in such peace efforts.
The MILF was among the first signatories of Geneva Call’s Deed of Commitment banning anti-personnel (AP) mines in 2002.
The peace agreement makes reference to this pledge and states that “[b]oth Parties commit to uphold the Deed of Commitment under Geneva Call for Adherence to the Total Ban on Anti-Personnel Mines and for Cooperation in Mine Action signed by the MILF on 7 April 2002”.
Geneva Call welcomes the insertion of this provision and is confident that the peace agreement will improve the lives of the civilian population caught up in the conflict.
Geneva Call’s activities in the Philippines continue. Geneva Call recently supported the dissemination of General Order no. 3 – which incorporates the obligations of the Deed of Commitment into the MILF’s code of conduct – through trainings and distribution of thousands of booklets in five community languages.
In 2014, Geneva Call will engage the MILF on the protection of civilians against sexual violence and the promotion of women’s rights and their participation in decision-making processes.
To read more about our activities in the Philippines: http://genevacall.org/where-we-work/philippines/