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GRP and NDFP open their second round of formal negotiations in Oslo


Watch select scenes of the historic opening ceremony of the second round of formal talks between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) in Oslo, Norway last October 6, 2016.

Despite a nine-hour delay from the original 10 o’clock schedule of the ceremony, the event successfully set the tone for the next fur days of the negotiations that are hoped to produce agreements on socio-economic reforms, amnesty for political prisoners, joint ceasefire, and political and constitutional reforms.

Kodao Productions continues its comprehensive coverage of the formal peace talks for the fourth consecutive time.

Oslo, Norway
October 6, 2016

GRP-NDFP agree on six major points, initialize drafts on 4th day of talks

OSLO, Norway—The Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace panels have already agreed on six major issues barely into the fourth day of their scheduled five-day talks.

Moving with surprising dispatch, both panels already initialled their joint drafts of the affirmation of previously signed agreements, reconstitution of NDFP’s list of Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG)-protected personnel, acceleration of the peace negotiations, the mode of interim ceasefire, general amnesty of NDFP-listed political detainees, and the convening of the Joint Monitoring Committee of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL).

Panels announce six agreements on 4th day of talks

OSLO, Norway—The Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace panels have already agreed on six major issues barely into the fourth day of their scheduled five-day talks.

Moving with surprising dispatch, both panels already initialled their joint drafts of the affirmation of previously signed agreements, reconstitution of NDFP’s list of Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG)-protected personnel, acceleration of the peace negotiations, the mode of interim ceasefire, general amnesty of NDFP-listed political detainees, and the convening of the Joint Monitoring Committee of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL).

All six agreements are currently being combined and will be issued as a Joint Statement at the closing ceremony scheduled at eleven o’clock in the morning of Friday, August 26.

Natutuwa kami sa naging resulta ng pag-uusap ngayon.  Itong anim na punto ay magandang produkto na ng pag-uusap. At mahusay ang atmosphereVery friendly at cordial,” NDFP chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni said.

“It turned out that both panels did not have many differences in opinion, so we reached an early consensus,” GRP negotiating panel chairperson Silvestre Bello III for his part said.

Bello said they will recommend to President Rodrigo Duterte the issuance of a general amnesty to all political detainees included in the list submitted by the NDFP.

Both panels have also agreed to hold their next round of formal talks in the second week of October in this city. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

 

 

 

 

Talks hit ‘minor bumps’ on 3rd day but remain ahead of schedule

OSLO, Norway—The ongoing formal peace negotiations between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) have hit minor bumps on some issues but remain “slightly ahead of schedule.”

GRP panel chair Silvestre Bello III said there have been minor difficulties but both panels were able to meet their schedule at the end of their third day of negotiations.

Na-stall lang kami dun sa last two issues—general amnesty and mode of interim ceasefire,” Bello said.

“But we already have a common statement ready, except for the formulation of our statement on amnesty and ceasefire,” he added.

Bello said the panels agreed to devote the fourth day of the negotiations on these last two issues.

NDFP panel member and spokesperson Fidel Agcaoili said that reciprocal working groups each met Wednesday morning and reported their recommendations to the negotiating panels near midday.

“It is a good thing that a bigger number of NDFP consultants are now able to directly participate and their presence here contributes to the faster pace of the talks,” Agcaoili said.

Ceasefire extention

Bello said the GRP is expecting the NDFP to declare an extension of its ongoing seven-day unilateral ceasefire in response to the “smooth and cordial” talks.

“Although, of course, the decision remains with them (NDFP).  But from all indications, mukhang ganun .  Tinitingnan mo ang body language nila e,” Bello said.

NDFP’s Agcaoili, however, says the NDFP have yet to decide on the possibility of extending their ceasefire declaration.

Pag-uusapan pa iyan bukas (Thursday),” Agcaoili said.

The Communist Party of the Philippines has declared a unilateral ceasefire from August 21 to 27 while President Rodrigo Duterte issued a unilateral open-ended ceasefire starting August 21.

Yung kay Presidente, walang timeframe.  Depende sa developments on when he (Duterte) will decide to lift it,” Bello said.

Schedule of next meetings

Bello also disclosed that the meetings of the different working groups and the committee on socio-economic reforms went quicker than expected.

Medyo matagal-tagal yung sa CASER (Comprehensive Agreement on Socio-Economic Reforms). It took them two hours.  But the meeting on Political and Constitutional Reforms, I think only 30 minutes,” Bello said.

May nagsabi pa ngang iyung End of Hostilities and Disposition of Forces (working group) ay nine minutes lang,” he said.

Bello also said that other meetings have already been scheduled after the first round for formal talks.

Mayroon na.  In the report of the committees, may initial dates na. The Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC, of the Comprehensive Agreement on Respet for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law) already mentioned September 20 to 23,” Bello said.

The GRP under the Gloria Arroyo and Benigno Aquino governments have never agreed to convene the JMC despite its formation in 2004 and the existence of a Joint Secretariat based in Cubao, Quezon City.

Bello said the JMC meeting, which will probably be held in Manila, will probably talk about the thousands of human rights complaints it received in the past 12 years.

“So maganda ang daloy ng pag-uusap,” Bello said.

The talks took a break Wednesday afternoon. # (Raymund B. Villanueva)

 

 

 

 

Six more NDFP consultants arrive in Oslo

Concha Araneta-Bocala, Randy Malayao, Kennedy Bangibang, Alfredo Mapano, Ariel Arbitrario, and Eduardo Genelsa arrived this morning in Oslo, Norway to participate in the formal peace talks between the GRP and the NDFP. Read more

LARAWAN: Arrival of GPH and NDFP delegates

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Oslo, Norway

August 22, 2016

13 consultants free; 6 others remain in detention as talks fast approaches

THIRTEEN National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) peace consultants have been released while six others are still in detention as the resumption of the formal peace talks fast approaches.

Since August 15, Ma. Concepcion Araneta-Bocala; Ariel Arbitrario; Renante Gamara; Alan Jazmines; Alfredo Mapano; Tirso Alcantara; Kennedy Bangibang; Eddie Genelsa; Ruben Saluta; and Adelberto Silva have been released on bail by trial courts throughout the country where they faced criminal charges. Read more

What they said before: GPH and NDFP opening statements at last formal talks in 2011

AS PART of Kodao Productions’ series on the imminent resumption of formal peace talks between the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) and the incoming Government of the Philippines (GPH) under President-elect Rodrigo R. Duterte, these opening statements by the incumbent GPH and the NDFP at their first and only formal talks in February 18, 2011 are hereby republished.

Duterte-appointed representatives Jesus Dureza, Silvestre Bello III and Hernani Braganza are, at the moment, on their way to Oslo, Norway to meet with the old NDFP panel for preliminary talks before their formal meet sometime in July.

The following speeches were delivered by incumbent Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Teresita Deles for the GPH and Luis Jalandoni for the NDFP, respectively.

While the February 2011 talks resulted in a Joint Statement, there has been no peace achievements made since, however.

In his speech, Jalandoni called for the release of NDFP consultants and staff and the honoring of previous signed agreements.

After the Oslo meet, the GPH under Benigno Aquino has subsequently arrested more NDFP consultants and wanted to set aside signed agreements such as The Hague Joint Declaration (THJD) and the Joint Agreement on Immunity and Safety Guarantees (JASIG).

Deles was reported to have dismissed THJD as a “document of perpetual division.”

The audio recordings were originally published by Bulatlat.com. Kodao Productions recorded the speeches in Oslo, Norway.

PAPP Teresita Q. Deles

NDFP chief negotiator Luis Jalandoni