AUGUST 20, 2016 — President Rodrigo Duterte has restored the effects of the unilateral ceasefire with the Communist Party of the Philippines/New People’s Army/National Democratic Front Philippines (CPP/NPA/NDFP) effective 12 midnight on August 21, 2016.
In a statement issued today, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza said the duration of the ceasefire will last “for as long as necessary to bring peace in the land and also in order to provide an enabling environment for the success of the peace negotiations that will start in Oslo, Norway on August 22.”
The announcement also came after the CPP and the NPA announced its own seven-day unilateral ceasefire with the government.
Duterte had first declared a unilateral ceasefire on July 25 in his first State of the Nation Address (SONA).
However, the President lifted it on July 30 due to the failure of the CPP/NPA/NDFP to reciprocate with its own ceasefire.
Dureza said Duterte today restored the effects of that ceasefire declaration “precisely at this strategic time when we are all at the onset of the formal resumption of peace talks that had previously stalled for the last four years.”
“The operational guidelines of the said ceasefire declaration for the Armed Forces of the Philippines, the Philippine National Police, and other security units of the government are also hereby restored,” he added.
“Our citizens deserve no less. They wish to live peaceful lives bereft of the costs and tragic consequences of conflict and violence,” Dureza said.
He also said the enabling environment brought about by this “silencing of the guns” will “hopefully go a long way in bringing about an expeditious and early resolution to our differences and aspirations that have long divided us as a people.”
“As we all know, in full support for the orderly and effective conduct of the peace negotiations, President Duterte has caused the unprecedented and historical release from detention of 20 prisoners who are needed in the peace negotiations. As we speak, there is continuing effort to make available in the Oslo peace talks resumption as many of them as possible,” Dureza said.
“I say again: the Duterte government will walk the extra mile for peace,” he added.