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OPAPP disavows supposed Zamboanga City peace forum with MNLF, OIC
OPAPP warned that organizers had "clearly misrepresenting the Philippine government, the OIC and the MNLF."
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OPAPP disavows supposed Zamboanga City peace forum with MNLF, OIC

Roel Pareño (The Philippine Star) - November 2, 2019 - 11:44am

ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines — A supposed forum on the peace process and federalism in Zamboanga City that caused tension in parts of the city had no authorization from the Office of the Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process, its chief said.

Presidential peace adviser Carlito Galvez Jr. said in a statement that a group had misrepresented his office in setting up the forum "to be participated in by members of the Moro National Liberation Front and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation."

The arrival of hundreds of MNLF members without prior coordination with the government on October 30 caused tension among residents of the still unfinished resettlement sites in two villages that were devastated by the September 2013 siege by a faction led by founding chairman Nur Misuari. Some left their homes in fear of an attack. 

Hundreds of police and military personnel were deployed to the barangays of Rio Hondo and Sta. Catalina for a house-to-house search for the MNLF members.

Galvez said organizers, claiming to represent the national government, planned to conduct a forum with members of the MNLF and the OIC at a Zamboanga City hotel.

"To set the record straight, the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace Process has not authorized any of these personalities and or their organizations to carry out such an activity," he said.

"The people behind this so-called peace forum in Zamboanga City are clearly misrepresenting the Philippine government, the OIC and the MNLF, as stated in their letter request addressed to the City Government of Zamboanga," Galvez said without naming the group.

The presidential peace adviser said he supports the call of Mayor Maria Isabelle Climaco-Salazar for authorities to look into the incident and to keep the group from mispresentation that can create misunderstanding, confusion and unnecessary public alarm.

Galvez said that the governmenr will continue to engage with Misuari to complete the remaining commitments under the 1996 Final Peace Agreement through the Tripartite Review Process and the Bangsamoro Coordinating Forum with the OIC.

He added that OPAPP has organized the GPH-MNLF Joint Peace Coordinating Committees (JPCC) in order to have continuous dialogue, coordination and collaboration with the MNLF to ensure peace in the region.

CARLITO GALVEZ MORO NATIONAL LIBERATION FRONT NUR MISUARI OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENTIAL ADVISER ON THE PEACE PROCESS ORGANIZATION OF ISLAMIC COOPERATION
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