Facts Belie Claims of GPH Officials on Termination of Peace Talks

Chairperson, NDFP Negotiating Panel
03 May 2013

A presentation of the facts which transpired at the 25-26 February 2013 meeting in Amsterdam between representatives of the government of the Philippines (GPH) and National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) belies the claims of GPH officials that the GPH terminated the formal peace talks and that the NDFP “killed” the special track. OPAPP Secretary Teresita Deles, GPH Negotiating Panel Chairperson Alexander Padilla and GPH Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda have made such claims.

On the morning of 26 February, there was a discussion of the inputs by the GPH representatives coming from their 20 February 2013 draft. This draft insisted on indefinite, simultaneous and unilateral ceasefires. It also declared that land reform and national industrialization were “ideologically charged” concepts. After that discussion, the GPH representatives abruptly left the meeting room.

Immediately, Royal Norwegian facilitator Ambassador Ture Lundh called for a sidebar meeting between him, Secretary Ronald Llamas and Professor Jose Maria Sison. Ambassador Ture Lundh asked both delegations to reconvene. Prof. Sison said the NDFP side would probably agree to reconvene if they would be able to present the NDFP Draft Agreement to Formulate the General Declaration.

However, Secretary Ronald Llamas said he wanted to consult his principal. When Ambassador Lundh said he also wanted to consult his principal, Prof. Sison had to agree. He then gave copies to Llamas and Ture Lundh of the above-mentioned NDFP draft and the NDFP Initial and Partial Draft General Declaration on National Unity and Just Peace, both dated 26 February 2013.

There was absolutely no talk about termination of the peace talks. Nor was there talk of the special track being killed.

GPH Presidential Spokesperson Lacierda’s insistence that the NDFP has been informed of the termination of the peace talks is contradicted by the facts. He exposes his ignorance of the provision of the Joint Agreement on Safety and Immunity Guarantees (JASIG) which stipulates that a written notice of termination must be given. No such notice of termination has been given to the NDFP, which is the proper addressee of such notice of termination.

Chairperson, NDFP Negotiating Panel