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Remember Sabah

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NOT TO be a party-pooper, but something sticks in my craw and raises my hackles when Malaysia is mentioned by Filipinos in such glowing terms—and the remarks of Pres. Benigno Aquino III were no exception.

Posted: March 29th, 2014 in Columnists,Columns,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

How Maguindanao and Cotabato rulers helped Sulu win Sabah

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AN IRANUN sea raider, attired in cotton-quilted vest and armed with a spear, kris and “kampilan” decorated with human hair. The Iranuns were subjects of Sultan Kudarat.  PHOTO BY James Francis Warren, “Iranun and Balangingi: Globalization, Maritime Raiding and the Birth of Ethnicity.” 2002

The Sultanate of Maguindanao and the kingdom of Buayan in upper Cotabato played key roles in ending a civil war in Brunei in the 17th century that resulted in the Sulu sultanate being rewarded a huge swath of territory called Sabah.

Posted: March 30th, 2013 in Featured Gallery,Inquirer Opinion,Talk of the Town | Read More »

Sabah issue in international law

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Under a treaty entered into with the sultans of Sulu and Maguindanao in 1640, the Spaniards recognized the independence of the two sultanates. Thus, the Sulu sultan later became the sovereign ruler of Sabah.

Posted: March 23rd, 2013 in Inquirer Opinion,Talk of the Town | Read More »

Global audience for Sabah

Two events this past week may mark a turning point in the Sabah dispute. The first was when the Philippine government called upon its Malaysian counterpart to “clarify” reports about human rights abuses by Malaysian security forces on our nationals. The second was when the Malaysian government barred Filipino journalists from entering Sabah, only to relent a day later and allow them access to evacuation camps. These show that both sides realize that there is a global audience they must address and global standards of justice they need to satisfy.

Posted: March 15th, 2013 in Editor's Pick,Editorial,Featured Columns,Featured Headline,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

The last sultan

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How copious is our understanding of the Sultanate of Sulu? If Malacañang’s statement is true, that it has only begun consulting historical documents, then that understanding is miserably wanting. Manila has always had an ambivalent appreciation of the sultanate and its rightful place as an institution in Philippine polity.

Posted: March 11th, 2013 in Columnists,Columns,Editor's Pick,Inquirer Opinion | Read More »

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