Today News
A+ A A-
Mario J. Mallari

Gov’t, NDFP peace panels to meet in The Netherlands

Tuesday, 21 October 2014 00:00 Published in Nation

Peace panels of the Government of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) are scheduled to meet within the next few days in The Netherlands to discuss possible resumption of the peace negotiations.
In a statement, NDFP chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni said that the meeting between the two sides was set after series of consultations.
Jalandoni, however, did not say when is the exact meeting between the two sides.
“A series of consultations between the NDFP Negotiating Panel and a high level delegation of the GPH has resulted in a meeting between the two sides scheduled in Utrecht within the next few days,” said Jalandoni.
“The two sides are discussing the possible resumption of peace negotiations after the collapse of talks on truce and cooperation last February 2013,” he added.
At the same time, Jalandoni welcomed the appointment of Elisabeth Slattum as the new special envoy of the Royal Norwegian Government (RNG), the third party facilitator in GPH-NDFP talks.
Slattum, who has experience in peace talks in Columbia, Nepal and Haiti, and Espen Lindbaeck, deputy director of the Peace and Reconciliation Section of the RNG-Foreign Ministry, have spoken with NDFP negotiating panel last Oct. 18 in Utrecht.
“This new team of the RNG expressed its willingness to help in the resumption of formal talks and to hold the next meeting of the negotiating panels in Oslo, Norway,” said Jalandoni.
“We reiterated our readiness to resume formal talks on the basis of past bilateral peace agreements in order to address the roots of the armed conflict,” he added.
Jalandoni cited the release of four prisoners of war (PoWs) by the New People’s Army (NPA) last July 29 as “goodwill measure” to promote peace talks.
According to Jalandoni, the revolutionary forces are ready to free two more PoWs to prove its sincerity in the peace negotiation.
“They are again offering to release two more PoWs, but the AFP is not willing to issue the suspension of offensive military and police operations that is needed for the safe and orderly release of the PoWs,” said Jalandoni.

AFP vows military offensives vs Abus to rescue 10 hostages

Tuesday, 21 October 2014 00:00 Published in Nation

The Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) yesterday vowed relentless offensive operations in the island-province of Sulu to get rid of the terrorist Abu Sayyaf Group and free the remaining 10 hostages, including three foreigners.
At the same time, AFP chief of staff Gen. Gregorio Pio Catapang Jr. insisted that the military has no knowledge about the payment of P250-million ransom to the Abu Sayyaf in exchange to the release of Germans Stefan Viktor Okonek, 71, and Herike Diesen, 55, last Friday in Sulu.
“We don’t have any knowledge about the ransom but we will conduct all out law enforcement offensive to get the ASG and free the kidnap victims,” Catapang said.
“Surely, we will catch up with them,” Catapang also said, stressing the military has not set any time-frame to finish the all-out offensive operation.
Catapang said the AFP will make assessment after one month.
The Abu Sayyaf group is still holding 10 hostages, including the two European birdwatchers kidnapped in Tawi-Tawi in February 2012 and a Japanese.
Yesterday, another Abu Sayyaf encampment was recovered by elements of the Army’s 35th Infantry Battalion (IB) in Barangay Abuntakas, Patikul town at around 8 a.m.
Col. Alan Arrojado, the Commander of the Joint Task Group Sulu, personally inspected the ASG camp.
“I believe that it is a security outpost that is manned by more or less 10 people. We are continuously tracking them as they flee towards the forested parts of the town,” Arrojado said.
So far, three Abu Sayyaf lairs had been seized by government security forces since the two German hostages were released Friday night.
Lt. Chester Catapang, the leader of the recon elements, said that they discovered the satellite camp a few hundred meters away from the larger camp that was found Sunday at 3 p.m.
Earlier on Sunday, troops also found an abandoned Abu Sayyaf camp in Barangay Buhanginan also in Patikul where the Germans were believed to have been kept.
“There are no recorded skirmishes between the military and the ASG since the release of the German hostages two nights ago (Friday),” said Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc, spokesman of the AFP.

2 cops hurt in Nlex bus hostage drama

Tuesday, 21 October 2014 00:00 Published in Nation

Two policemen were injured after they grappled and subdued a knife-wielding suspect, who took two fellow bus passengers as hostages, ending the two-hour drama.
Nabbed was Lauro Sanchez, who initially commandeered a Manila-bound Everlasting bus while traversing North Luzon Expressway (Nlex) in Guiguinto, Bulacan.
The suspect went on to take two passengers as hostages.
Citing report from the Bulacan police, Philippine National Police (PNP) spokesman Senior Supt. Wilben Mayor said that a crisis management committee was immediately activated when the hostage-taking occurred at around 6:30 a.m.
Senior Supt. Ferdinand Divina, Bulacan Provincial Police Office chief, was tapped as head of the crisis management committee.
“After series of negotiations failed to convince the suspect to surrender, the crisis management committee decided to launch an assault which led to the arrest of Sanchez and the rescue of the hostages and other passengers,” the police spokesman said.
The hostage drama ended at around 8:40 a.m.
Mayor said that two policemen were slightly injured after they grappled with the hostage-taker.

Commentaries

Prolonging the useless probe

21-10-2014 Ninez Cacho-Olivares

Prolonging the useless probe

Sen. Koko Pimentel, who chairs the panel, hinted at put...

Ukraine says goodbye Lenin as Communists…

21-10-2014 AFP and Tribune Wires

Ukraine says goodbye Lenin as Communists face poll wipeout

ZAPORIZHIA — Ever since Oleksiy Baburin’s Stalin statue...

The 14-percent election

21-10-2014 Charlie V. Manalo

The 14-percent election

If this judge from far-flung trial court in Baguias in ...

Making managers manage

21-10-2014 Ken Fuller

Making managers manage

Filipino workers had better be prepared to defend their...

So what?

21-10-2014 Archbishop Oscar V.Cruz

So what?

So what if many Filipinos wallow in poverty and misery ...

US airdrops supplies to Syrian Kurds as …

21-10-2014 AFP and Tribune Wires

US airdrops supplies to Syrian Kurds as Kobane battle rages

MURSITPINAR — America airdropped weapons, ammunition an...

Headlines

Headlines

Nation

Metro

Sports

Life Style

Etcetera

Motoring

business

Copyright 2000-2012 All rights reserved, The Daily Tribune Publishing Inc.