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Malaysia renews support to Mindanao peace process

BANGSAMORO NEWS UPDATES • 00:19 AM Mon Aug 10, 2015
Edwin Fernandez
Malaysian Ambassador to the Philippines His Excellency Dato Mohammad Zamri Mohammad Kassim (L) and MILF chief Al Haj Murad Ebrahim. (Photo courtesy of MILF)

SULTAN KUDARAT, Maguindanao -- Malaysia will continue to invite Malaysian traders to invest in Mindanao even as it expressed continued support to the Mindanao peace process, a ranking Malaysian official in the Philippines told officials of a Moro group in Southern Philippines. Malaysian Ambassador to the Philippines His Excellency Dato Mohammad Zamri Mohammad Kassim made the renewal ofcommitment during his visit to Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) stronghold in Barangay Darapanan, Sultan Kudarat town in Maguindanao over the weekend. Mohammad Kassim met with MILF chief Al Haj Murad Ebrahim and MILF Vice Chair for Political Affairs Ghadzali Jaafar in the MILF chair's offie in Barangay Darapanan. He was accompanied by Malaysian Consul Zawawi Tahir and MGeneral Sheikh Mohksin, Head of International Monitoring Team (IMT) Mission-10 and their delegation Murad warmly welcome the Malaysian delegation and expressed appreciation for their coming to Mindanao and at Camp Darapanan. Mohammad Kassim reiterated his government’s strong commitment and support to the peace process as well as to continue acting as peace process facilitator and head of the IMT as long as both parties need it. Malaysia has been the lead country in the six nation IMT which monitors the implementation of the GPH-MILF ceasefire agreement since 2003. The Malaysian envoy told Murad his government will continue to extend to the Bangsamoro and Filipino People in general their assistance in the field of education and human resource development (HRD) through their institutions and programs and others. He also told Malaysia will continue to assist in developing the economy through inviting and encouraging private investors to invest in the Bangsamoro and other parts of the country. We continue to hope and pray for the early passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law(BBL) that is acceptable to all parties and the Bangsamoro people and to continue to monitor the situation and progress of the peace process. Murad, in a statement, expressed the MILF and the Moro peoples’ gratitude to the active participation of the Malaysian Government in the peace process that included the facilitation of the peace talks heading the IMT as well as extending educational and human resource development training to selected Moro individuals particularly on capacity building, among others. These capacity building programs Malaysia has been providing to Moro participants in Kuala Lumpur are in preparation for the upcoming establishment of the Bangsamoro new political entity once the BBL is passed by congress and ratified by the people in proposed areas of Bangsamoro in a plebiscite. The BBL remain in the two chambers of Congress and both are yet to come up with a final version of the Bangsamoro Law seen to resolve the decades-old Bangsamoro Problem. The proposed law is still pending in congress and expected to be passed within the year. In a separate statement, the MILF and the GPH Peace panel, as well as prominent individuals including influential Cotabato Archbishop Orlando Cardinal Quevedo, civil society organizations and non government organizations (CSOs and NGOs) supportive of the peace process and the Bangsamoro people have urged congress to pass the original version of the proposed law agreed between President Benigno Aquino II and the MILF submitted to congress on September 10, 2014. The draft law was based on the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) and the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB). A sumptuous lunch was shared by visiting Malaysian diplomats and MILF central committee members after the meeting.

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