THE government yesterday announced it is again declaring a ceasefire with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army (CPP-NPA) ahead of the resumption of the peace talks with the communist group in Oslo, Norway.
In a press conference at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport (NAIA) in Pasay City, Presidential Adviser on the Peace Process Jesus Dureza said the ceasefire will start at 12:01 a.m. today.
“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,” Dureza said.
Dureza and the rest of the members of the government’s peace panel were expected to leave for Oslo after the press conference.
The declaration came after the CPP-NPA announced a seven-day ceasefire on Friday night as a sign of goodwill for the formal peace talks set from August 22 to 26.
The CPP-NPA declared the ceasefire following the release of 17 of the 22 detained NDF consultants including couple Benito and Wilma Tiamzon, chairman and secretary-general, respectively, of the CPP-NPA, in order for them to participate in the peace talks.
For its part, the NDF ordered its armed wing NPA to release two ranking police officers in its custody in Southern Mindanao.
During his first State of the Nation Address (SONA) on July 25, Duterte delcared a unilateral ceasefire with the CPP-NPA-NDF expecting the other camp to do the same.
He lifted the ceasefire on July 30 after the CPP-NPA-NDF failed to reciprocate his declaration within his deadline and following an ambush of members of the Civilian Armed Forces Geographical Unit in Davao del Norte on July 27.