PCEC calls for resumption of peace talks between communist rebels and gov’t

Published April 3, 2018, 6:57 PM

by Roel Tibay

By Leslie Ann Aquino

Maintaining that a just, lasting and sustainable peace cannot be achieved through armed means, the Philippine Council of Evangelical Churches (PCEC) has called for the resumption of the peace talks between communist rebels and the national government.


“We earnestly urge them to continue and finish this all-important task for the benefit of the Filipino people,” PCEC national director Bishop Noel Pantoja said in a statement.

PCEC commended the 61 lawmakers for signing House Resolution 1803 that calls on President Duterte to resume the peace talks.

“PCEC welcomes the Resolution and has consistently maintained that a just, lasting and sustainable peace cannot be achieved through armed means, but only through a determined and sincere commitment to see through the peace negotiations to its successful conclusion,” Pantoja said.

Despite the halted peace talks, the PCEC said they continue to hope for the sincerity of the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP)  and the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP) to better the lives of our country’s marginalized sectors.

“We therefore call on President Duterte as the main overseer of our country’s welfare to lead in finding feasible ways that will overcome the current impasse, and to persist in the path of peaceful negotiations,” Pantoja said.

“We also call on both parties of the GRP and the NDFP to reaffirm and abide by all the bilateral agreements and statements as specified in the 2017 Utrecht Joint Statement,” he added.

The religious organization then called on its members to offer prayers for peace in the country and the resumption of peace talks.

“We call on our country’s Evangelical Christians to ardently offer prayers for our nation’s peace and genuine social transformation, and to join hands with all peace-loving advocates in calling for the immediate recommencement of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations,” said Pantoja.

It was back in November 2017 when Duterte signed Proclamation 360, which declared the termination of peace negotiations between the NDFP and the GRP.