When the JASIG-protected NDFP consultants are released and get travel documents before August 20, it would be better than not to resume formal peace talks on August 20-27, 2016 because it is during the formal talks that the GPH and NDFP negotiating panels can discuss the mode of ceasefire and how best to arrange this.
Concerning President Duterte’s statement in Davao last night, we address him in his official capacity and not at a personal level. We understand that as commander-in-chief of the Armed Forces of the Philippines he has the duty to show official and personal concern for his troops and mourn their death as casualties of war.
However, we wish to point out that the use of command-detonated land mines is not violative of the Geneva Convention and the Ottawa Treaty.
The New People’s Army can use these weapons in its military operations inasmuch as there is yet no ceasefire of any kind which is valid and effective between the NPA and the AFP.
Thus the resumption of formal talks is necessary to allow both negotiating panels to take up the mode of ceasefire, as stated in the Joint Statement signed in Oslo on June 15, 2016.
Luis G. Jalandoni
Chairperson, NDFP Negotiating Panel