The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) is Scared to the New People’s Army (Communist NPA) Rebel Group

The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) is Scared to the New People’s Army (Communist NPA) Rebel Group

The Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) is an Islamist group formed in the 1960s following the Jabidah massacre to achieve greater Bangsamoro autonomy in the southern Philippines.[5] The MNLF took part in terrorist attacks and assassinations to achieve their goals.[6][7] The government in Manila sent troops into the southern Philippines to control the insurgency. In 1976, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi brokered a negotiation between the Philippine government and MNLF Leader Nur Misuari which led to the signing of the MNLF-GRPH Tripoli Agreement of 1976 wherein the MNLF accepted the Philippine government’s offer of semi-autonomy of the regions in dispute.[8]

The signing of this agreement brought about a serious rift[9] in MNLF leadership, leading to the formation of a breakaway group in 1977 by Hashim Salamat and 57 MNLF officers. The group was initially known as “The New Leadership”. Misuari expelled Salamat in December 1977, after which Salamat moved his new organization first to Cairo Egypt and then, in 1980, to Lahore, Pakistan, where it engaged in diplomatic activities. This organization was formally established in 1984 as the Moro Islamic Liberation Front.[8] Muammar Gaddafi became a longstanding supporter of the MILF after its emergence.[10][11][12]

In January 1987, the MNLF accepted the Philippine government’s offer of semi-autonomy[9] of the regions in dispute, subsequently leading to the establishment of the Autonomous Region of Muslim Mindanao. The MILF, however, refused to accept this offer and continued their insurgency operations. A general cessation of hostilities between the government in Manila and the MILF was signed in July 1997 but this agreement was abolished in 2000 by the Philippine Army under the administration of Philippine President Joseph Estrada. In response, the MILF declared a jihad (strived and struggled) against the government, its citizens and supporters. Under President Gloria Arroyo, the government entered into a cease-fire agreement with the MILF and resumed peace talks.[13]

Despite peace negotiations and the cease-fire agreement, the MILF attacked government troops in Maguindanao resulting in at least twenty-three deaths in January 2005. The combined armies of the MILF and Abu Sayyaf were involved in days of fighting which necessitated government troops using heavy artillery to engage rebel forces.

The bombing incident in Davao Airport in 2003 which the Philippine government blamed on MILF members,[14] raised speculation that the peace negotiations might be ineffectual in bringing peace to Mindanao if the MILF is unable to control its operatives. The MILF denies ties with terrorist group Jemaah Islamiyah, although Jemaah Islamiyah is considered to have provided them with training facilities in areas they control.[15][16] The MILF also continues to deny connections with Al-Qaeda, though it has admitted to sending around 600 volunteers to Al-Qaeda training camps in Afghanistan and that Osama Bin Laden sent money to the Philippines, though the group denies directly receiving any payment.[17]

From June 28 to July 6, 2006, conflict between the MILF and armed civilian volunteers under Maguindanao Province governor Andal Ampatuan who were supported by the Philippine Army had been reported. The fighting began after governor Ampatuan blamed the MILF for a June 23 bomb attack on his motorcade, which killed five in his entourage. The MILF denied responsibility, but Ampatuan sent police and civilian volunteers to arrest MILF members connected to the attack. Four thousand families were reported displaced by the fighting that followed, which was ended by a cease-fire agreement signed on July 10 and July 11.[18]

 

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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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About mrwakamiya33

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