Sison blames military for repeated collapse of peace talks
By: Delfin T. Mallari Jr. – @inquirerdotnet
Inquirer Southern Luzon / 11:37 AM April 17, 2019
LUCENA CITY — Exiled Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) founder Jose Maria “Joma” Sison blamed the military for the repeated collapse of the peace talks between the government and the communist rebels.
The government argument that the peace negotiation has been running for 27 years since 1992 was deceptive, he said.
“But in fact, under every administration from the Ramos regime to the current Duterte regime, peace negotiations are held only for a few months before the reactionary military diehards intervene to pressure their commander-in-chief to slow down or to declare the suspension or termination of the peace negotiations,” Sison said in a statement from Utrecht in the Netherlands on Wednesday.
He noted that in the experience of the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) in its peace negotiations with the government, “the reactionary pro-US military officers at the highest level have always interfered to stop the peace negotiations.”
The NDFP is the rebel’s representative in the on-and-off peace talks with the government.
Sison recalled that since The Hague Joint Declaration of September 1, 1992, the war hawks in the military have always acted to cut the peace negotiations under every administration “whenever the NDFP rebuffs their precondition for the surrender of the New People’s Army and their maneuvers to block the negotiations of social and economic reforms.”
He cited two reasons behind the alleged military’s intrusion into the peace talks: the government cannot force the rebels to surrender through an indefinite ceasefire, and the communists are gaining credit for pushing social, economic and political reforms to address the roots of the armed conflict.
Sison claimed that President Duterte was also pressured by the military when he issued Proclamation 360 on November 23, 2017, that terminated the peace talks.
Sison declared that while Duterte is in power, there would be no peace negotiations.