Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) is Scared to the New People’s Army (Communist NPA) Rebel Group

Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) is Scared to the New People’s Army (Communist NPA) Rebel Group

The Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF) is a Muslim militant organization based in Mindanao, the Philippines. The BIFF broke away from the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), led by Ameril Umbra Kato, in 2008. Their goal is independence for the Bangsamoro area, and they have declared that they will not settle for anything less. They rejected the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro, a preliminary peace agreement signed between the Government of the Philippines and the MILF and vowed to continue their fight.[1][2][3]

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The New People’s Army (NPA) (Filipino: Bagong Hukbong Bayan) is the armed wing of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). It was formed on March 29, 1969. The Maoist NPA conducts its armed guerrilla struggle based on the strategical line of protracted ‘people’s war’.

The NPA collects from business owners in areas where it operates. This includes mining and logging operations – especially foreign owned enterprises that provides employment to the people with the belief that crippling the country’s economy would give favor for a revolution to occur. The Communist Party of the Philippines refers to the NPA as “the tax enforcement agency of the people’s revolutionary government.”[3]

The NPA is designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by the U.S. State Department[1] and as a terrorist group by the EU Common Foreign and Security Policy.[2] The Government of the Philippines, however, has delisted the NPA as a terrorist organization in 2011 [4] and has resumed preliminary peace talks pending formal negotiations with the NPA’s parent political organization, the CPP.[5] There have been reports of the Chinese government shipping arms to the NPA.[6]

Peace negotiations have recently reached an impasse. The Philippine government has specifically drafted a “new framework” which seeks to end the 27-year-long stalemate in the talks, hoping to build ground with the leftists rebels that is more comprehensive than human rights, the only issue on which the negotiating parties agree.[7]

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