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RP ‘surprised’ at Malaysia monitors’ pullout (tags)
he Philippines on Tuesday said it was surprised at Malaysia’s decision to end its monitoring mission to the troubled southern Mindanao island this year. The government’s chief peace adviser Jesus Dureza said he had just finished a trip to Kuala Lumpur and officials there had given “no indication of any announcement of total withdrawal.” “I feel that we, as neighbors, should be working very closely for peace,” Dureza said. “I am confident that Malaysia will be with us all the way.”
Philippine Govt rejects OIC on MNLF camps (tags)
The Philippines has rejected the request of the powerful Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC)—the United Nations of Muslim majority countries, whose official observer for the Philippines is the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF)—to give back to the MNLF’s Ustadz Habier Malik the two camps that government troops wrested from Malik on April 15. The OIC is helping all parties in the Mindanao conflicts keep the peace. Its richer members are pouring development aid into Mindanao and have pledged to invest billions to make Mindanao and the Filipino Muslims enjoy prosperity and modernization. Malik had issued a declaration of jihad (holy war) against the government and the Armed Forces of the Philippines after government troops overran his MNLF camps in retaliation for his group’s attack, using mortars, on a Marine base. Malik’s attack killed two Marines.