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Philippine peace negotiator given award

Mohagher Iqbal given the Peace Award for his role in the peace process

Gulf News

Manila: A negotiator who played a crucial role in sealing the landmark Framework Peace Agreement between the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front was given an award by a Non-Government Organisation.

Mohagher Iqbal, who represented the MILF in the ongoing parlays with the government, was given the Peace Award for his role in the peace process.

The recognition was given by the Interreligious Solidarity Movement for Peace (IRSMP) and Peace Advocates Zamboanga (PAZ).

IRSMP and PAZ had held a quest for individuals who provided substantial contributions to peace by spearheading the Search for Peace Weaver Award for the Mindanao Week of Peace Celebration 2012.

A 12-member panel carefully selected individuals and institutions that had contributed largely in the heightening promotion of a culture of peace.

“We honour your significant contribution to the attainment of peace especially that you have demonstrated a personal record of involvement in projects and activities which are peace-building in nature or contributed to the attainment of peace, harmony and understanding in your institution,” IRSMP and PAZ told Iqbal in a letter.

Important juncture

A Framework Peace Agreement on the Bangsamoro was signed by the government and the MILF on October 15 in Manila. The signing was an important juncture that is expected to result in the affirmation of a Final Peace Agreement to ultimately end the conflict in southern Philippines between the government and the dominant Moro political group.

Currently, the two sides with the help of Malaysia as third party negotiator and several other government and non-government entities are nearing the home stretch for a final peace agreement that will create Bangsamoro, a substate

The negotiating parties on November 12-17 ended their 33rd round of Formal Exploratory Talks in Kuala Lumpur.

An important development was the forging of annexes in the Framework Peace Agreement on “power sharing and wealth sharing”.

“The panels and their respective TWGs will meet again in December to continue working on the three annexes to the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro. They remain committed to complete the annexes before the end of the year,” a joint statement issued by the government and MILF negotiating panels said.

“We’re past the major issues but there are still adjustments to be made concerning the details. Both parties know of the decision points needed. Both parties have publicly and officially committed to finish within the year,” A key personality in the negotiations, lead peace negotiator for the government Dean Marvic Leonen Leonen said.

Leonen had recently been appointed Associate Supreme Court Justice by President Benigno Aquino, but Presidential Adviser on Peace Process Teresita Quintos-Deles said the parlays will continue with the same vigour even without him.