Sara Duterte to pursue localized talks with Reds

Sara Duterte to pursue localized talks with Reds

President Rodrigo Duterte has signed Proclamation No. 360, effecting the mechanism terminating the peace negotiations with the Communist Party of the Philippines and its armed wing, the New Peoples' Army, Malacanang announced late Thursday night.

The President, he said, is now anxious to death by his own fear "that anti-Duterte officers within his own army and police are inclined to act in the name of the people and unite with the broad opposition and mass movement" to topple his administration "in the same manner that the Marcos and Estrada regimes were ended".

The NDFP did not ignore the government peace panel's proposal for a stand-down agreement prior to a coordinated unilateral ceasefire, Sison said, adding Duterte was lying.

"So legally, we can still continue to negotiate and talk if the NPA still want to talk through our DC-PEACE", Duterte-Carpio said.

"There will be no peace negotiations anymore with the CPP/NPA/NDF until such time as the desired enabling environment conducive to a change in the government's position becomes evident".

Sison said that instead of going through agreed channels, Duterte "cited alleged recent incidents in the armed conflict which he used as false basis for slandering the revolutionary forces and threatening the termination of the peace negotiations and the outlawing of the revolutionary forces and legal democratic forces as terrorists".

The signing of Proclamation 360 comes after Presidential Adviser on Peace Process Jesus Dureza announced Wednesday that the state peace negotiators would no longer push through with the peace talks with the communist leaders.

"While we agreed to resume peace talks with the aforementioned group and exerted our best efforts to accelerate the signing and implementation of the final peace agreement, the NDFP-CPP-NPA has engaged in acts of violence and hostilities", Roque stressed.

Dureza's pronouncements came after Duterte ordered the halt in talking peace with the communist group.

Duterte on November 18 said he is determined to consider the communist rebels as terrorists and criminals, after the death of a four-month-old baby and two other civilians in a November 9 ambush in Bukidnon.

Since 1986, the government has been trying to reach a peace deal with the communist rebels but failed to make any headway. The President said the government will no longer talk with communist rebels due to their continuing offensives. Peace talks to end the conflict, which the military says has claimed 30,000 lives, have been conducted on and off for three decades.

Duterte first declared the termination of talks on February 4, 2017, saying he considered the NPA as terrorists because they "were killing his soldiers" and violated their own unilateral ceasefire.