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Philippine Peace Center
NDFP Negotiating Panel
October 11, 2003
GRP and NDFP inch closer to resumption of formal peace talks
The GRP and NDFP negotiating panels held informal peace talks aimed at paving the way to the resumption of formal peace talks last October 9-10 in Oslo, Norway with the hosting and facilitation by the Royal Norwegian Government.
The two panels reaffirmed the validity and effectivity of the 1992 The Hague Joint Declaration and the nine other bilateral agreements, the March 9, 2003 Utrecht Joint Statement and the Oslo Communique of April 30, 2001 and agreed that these should be the basis for the resumption of formal talks.
The NDFP panel stressed the primacy of addressing the impediment presented by the terrorist listing of the CPP, NPA and NDFP Chief Political Consultant Prof. Jose Ma. Sison by the US, The Netherlands, the European Union, Canada, UK and Australia.
The NDFP reiterated its proposal for a GRP-NDFP joint statement renouncing and repudiating the terrorist listing by foreign governments as baseless and an intrusion into the internal affairs of the sovereign Filipino people, an impediment to the resumption of formal talks.
The GRP panel expressed the GRPís willingness to address this issue and asked for time to consider the NDFPís draft joint statement.
The NDFP panel also stressed the urgency of forming the Joint Monitoring Committee as provided for in the CARHRIHL. The GRP replied that this question is linked with the issue of terror listing and will be resolved in relation to this. It requested time to consult with its principal.
The GRP panel promised to look into the cases of political prisoners who continue to be detained despite approval of their release by Macapagal-Arroyo on just and meritorious grounds more than two years ago. The GRP panel also proposed that they hold periodic meetings with KARAPATAN and other HR organizations working for the political prisonersí release.
The two panels agreed to meet for another round of informal talks in Oslo after one month.
The GRP delegation included GRP Panel Chair Silvestre Bello III, panel member Riza Hontiveros-Baraquel, Secretary Teresita Deles, Secretary Norberto Gonzales,
Undersecretary Abraham Purugganan, and Panel Executive Secretary Carla Munsayac-Vallarta.
The NDFP delegation included NDFP Negotiating Panel Chair Luis Jalandoni, Chief Political Consultant Jose Ma. Sison, panel members Fidel V. Agcaoili, Consuelo Ledesma, Julieta Delima and Asterio Palima, General Counsel ad litem UN Judge Romeo T. Capulong, consultants and staff members.
The NDFP delegation also met with Norwegian progressive organizations, friends and activists who plan to put up the Defend Committee in Norway.
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