Bicol solon backs local peace talks as gaining grounds

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(L-R) Senator Chiz Escudero, Bishop Arturo Bastes and Governor Raul Lee. BICOLTODAY.COM PHOTO
(L-R) Senator Chiz Escudero, Bishop Arturo Bastes and Governor Raul Lee. BICOLTODAY.COM PHOTO

By Felix ‘Boy’ Espineda, Jr.

SORSOGON CITY, 05Sept2013 (BicolToday.com) – The clamor for the resumption of peace talks between the GPH and the NDFP in the local level has the support of Senator Francis Escudero stating his position that local peace process should be considered by parties to the Hague agreement of 1992. This was his statement during the councilors caucus held at their residence in Buhatan, last August 31.

His reference to the Hague Joint Declaration signed in September 1,1992 comes at the time that the 10th National Peace Consciousness Month is observe.

His position is the same as the call of Governor Raul Lee of Sorsogon in July this year when the governor called the warring parties to spare Sorsogon province from miseries and difficulties from the armed struggle and to preserve lives and property. (BicolToday.com.2013/07/18)

Sorsogon Province leaders are craving for the resumption of the peace process in the local level inspite of the objection of the NDFP, reasoning that they are in the best position to recommend to the national government the possible solution to end the conflict in their locality. Though hampered by resources, Lee without condition offered the resources of the provincial government to start the quest for peace.

The importance of localized peace process as aired by Senator Escudero and Governor Lee has the support of  Bishop Arturo Bastes of the Diocese of Sorsogon (BicolToday.com/29July2013). The bishop said that if the national government push with the peace negotiation with the NDF, the church here can be involved .in the local level.

The formula for countryside peace may be hard to find but Sorsogon leaders are urges by the civil society to press for the resumption of local peace talks for the GPH and the NDFP are still lock in pre-conditions that hindered progress and development in the countryside.

As the events of July this year army soldiers and NPA’s draws blood to each side, firefight erupted as retaliation of the loss of Ka Greg Bañares in Sitio Calmayon, Juban town were viewed as strategic revenge that does not serve the purpose of provincial leaders in its quest for peace. Though the NDFP position rejects local peace talks and Sorsogon rebels of the Celso Minguez Command wanted the resumption of the peace talks in the national level, still the clamor to achieve a lasting peace for Sorsogon Province could no longer be denied. [BicolToday.com]

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