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Duterte no longer wants to talk with communist rebels

MANILA-- President Rodrigo Duterte on Thursday said he no longer wanted to talk with the Communist Party of the Philippine-New People's Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF) following a string of attacks on state saecurity forces.

In a speech to soldiers belonging to the Philippine Army's 103rd Brigade during his visit in Marawi City, Duterte likewise said that he would go after the NPA once the government fully liberates Marawi City from Islamic State-inspired militants.

Huwag kayo masyado magkumpiyansa dyan, kasi there is a strong resurgence. Nabubuhay na naman ang NPA. Pagkatapos nito, letse itong putukan na ito, kapag naubos ang mga ulol, mag-re-orient tayo, NPA na naman. Kasi marami silang utang sa atin. Ayaw ko na makipag-usap sa kanila. Marami na akong sundalo na pinatay nila, marami na akong pulis na pinatay nila, Duterte said.

On Wednesday, a militiaman was killed while four officers of the Presidential Security Group (PSG) were wounded in an NPA ambush in Akaran, North Cotobato.

On the same day, two members of the Philippines Marines were gunned down by NPA rebels in Palawan.

On Thursday, Solicitor General Jose Calida instructed his office to ask the courts for the cancellation of the bail bonds of the NDF consultants and recommit them to their detention facilities.

Calida made the initiative after Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza declared backchannel talks with the communists fell due to recent attacks made by the NPA, the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines.

According to OSG Spokesperson Atty. Erik Dy, the Solicitor General already instructed the handling solicitors to ask the courts to cancel the bail bonds of the NDF consultants, order their arrests, and recommit them to their detention facilities.

The conditional release granted them by the courts are for the sole purpose of the formal peace negotiations. The conditions are based on the Supreme Court Resolution dated 2 August 2016, and not based on JASIG, Dy said, pertaining to an SC Resolution involving NDF leaders Ocampo, Echanis and Ladlad.

JASIG, or the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees, is an agreement signed by the Philippine government and the NDF in 1995.

It essentially guarantees the immunity and safety of individuals involved in the peace talks.

The conditions provide that should the formal peace negotiations cease or fail, their bond shall be deemed automatically canceled, Dy said.

Source: Philippine News Agency

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