CPP and NPA terminate ceasefire with
February 1, 2017
DOHA, Qatar—The Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) and the New
People’s Army (NPA) terminated their unilateral ceasefire declaration of
August 28, 2016 with the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP)
In a statement through NPA National Operational Command spokesperson Jorge
“Ka Oris” Madlos, the CPP and NPA said the termination is due to President
Rodrigo Duterte’s failure to release more than 200 political prisoners and
the Armed Forces of the Philippines’ (AFP) widespread violation of the
GRP’s own ceasefire declaration.
Madlos said the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP)
Negotiating Panel will notify its GRP counterpart of its decision today.
Their ceasefire declaration shall expire on 11:59 in the evening of
The termination came after skirmishes that reportedly resulted in the
capture of one and the killing of 10 AFP soldiers and the martyrdom of one
In Makilala, North Cotabato, 39th Infantry Battalion troops of the
Philippine Army (PA)overran an NPA encampment last January 21 and killed
an NPA guerrilla while reportedly losing eight of its own soldiers. The
incident happened while the third round of formal peace talks between the
GRP and the NDFP were ongoing in Rome, Italy;
In Surigao del Norte, a PA soldier was captured by the NPA last January 29
for encroaching on their territory;
Three AFP soldiers were reportedly injured after a 15-minute firefight
with the NPA last January 30 in Barangay Mat-i, Surigao City; and
In the same day, two AFP troopers were reportedly killed after a skirmish
with the NPA in Echague, Isabela.
“The GRP has treacherously taken advantage of the unilateral declaration
of interim ceasefire to encroach on the territory of the CPP’s People’s
Democratic Government,” Madlos said.
The NPA said GRP troops have occupied 500 barrios across 164
municipalities in 43 provinces that are within authority of their
“They (AFP) have subjected entire barrios to their armed presence and have
committed widespread violations of human rights, such as occupation of
people’s homes, barangay halls, day care centers and other civilian
structures,” Madlos said.
Madlos added that civilians have suffered threats, intimidations and
harassments by AFP troopers that gravely affect the people’s farm
productivity, commerce and overall livelihood.
Madlos said they have also decided to terminate their ceasefire
declaration due to Duterte’s failure to fulfil his promise to release
hundreds of political prisoners in compliance with the Comprehensive
Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law (CARHRIHL).
“The unilateral ceasefire declaration was issued on the mutual
understanding with the GRP that such releases will take effect within 60
days of August 28,” Madlos said.
The NPA spokesperson explained that such was the context why the GRP
Negotiating Panel approach its NDFP counterpart last October seeking an
extension of the CPP and NPA ceasefire declaration with a promise that
around 200 political prisoners were to be released.
“The Duterte regime failed to fulfil such obligation even though the CPP
obliged it by extending the ceasefire declaration to more than 150 days,”
Madlos’ statement said.
“Road to peace is not smooth”
In an earlier statement, GRP Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process
Jesus Dureza said they are distressed and extremely disturbed by alleged
series of attacks and harassments by suspected NPA elements.
“The unilateral ceasefire was precisely set in place to provide an
enabling environment for the ongoing peace talks,” Dureza said.
Dureza said that some in the NDFP leadership are not in full control of
their own forces on the ground or they are themselves undermining these
efforts for sustainable peace, or pressuring the government for some
But NDFP chief negotiator Fidel Agcaoili said Dureza should stop sowing
intrigue among the ranks of the revolutionary forces.
“We strongly advise Secretary Dureza not to raise the bogey of disunity
among the ranks of the revolutionary movement,” Agcaoili said.
“The NDFP shall hold the GRP responsible for anything untoward that may
happen to the ongoing peace negotiations as a result of its bellicose
statements on the actions of the NPA to defend itself and protect
communities after the Makilala incident,” Agcaoili said.
The NPA has ordered all its units, militia and self-defense corps to be on
active defense mode from today until the expiration of their unilateral
# (Raymund B. Villanueva)