Best time gov’t talked peace with communists
HOUSE SPEAKER Feliciano Belmonte Jr.’s meeting with communist leaders Jose Ma. Sison and Luis Jalandoni is very timely as the government is now in a better position to negotiate with the Communist Party of the Philippines/National Democratic Front for a peaceful and just end to the four-decade communist insurgency (“Hopes for new peace talks on Belmonte-Joma menu,” Front Page, 7/11/15).
The recent death of prominent New People’s Army commander Leoncio Pitao and the arrest of the Tiamzon couple last year give the government some leverage in the peace talks. These communist setbacks surely weakened the NPA on the ground. The government must be careful, however, to not allow the release of any captured rebel leader under the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees or on the basis of preconditions set by the communist party leaders.
The government has very little to lose if the peace talks do not resume; it has all the time and resources to wipe out the remnants of what is left of the communist insurgency in the country. This may not be achieved during the Aquino presidency, but the insurgency will end. Let us all hope so.
—JESSIE R MARTINEZ, [email protected]
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