MEMBERS of militant groups called on President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday to pursue the peace negotiation with the communists.

Militant groups Samahan ng mga Ex-Detainee Laban sa Detensyon at Aresto (Selda), Desaparecidos, and Hustisya staged a rally at the Malacañang grounds on Tuesday morning and appealed to Duterte to resume peace talks between the government and the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).

The groups went to Malacañang to personally hand a consolidated letter addressed to Duterte.

The letter was received by the Presidential Management Staff at 9:30 a.m.

In a letter signed by Selda chairperson Amaryllis Enriquez, Desaparecidos' Concepcion Empeno, and Hustisya chairperson Evangeline Hernandez, Duterte was urged to be the "peacemaker president of our time."

"We write to you, most importantly, as Filipinos who want genuine peace like you do. We are one with the people in calling for the resumption of the peace talks between the Republic of the Philippines and the National Democratic Front (NDF)," the letter read.

"We are among those who held much optimism upon the resumption of the formal peace negotiations," it added.

Duterte announced over the weekend the termination of peace dialogue between the government and the communists.

The Chief Executive had said there would no longer be peace negotiation under his watch unless there is a "compelling reason" to change his mind.

The groups stressed that the compelling reason for Duterte to proceed with the peace talks should be "the people who suffer from the grave injustices in our country."

"Mr. President, there is no other compelling reason to pursue genuine peace but the people who suffer from the grave injustices in our country. With the rest of the Filipino people, we want the peace talks to continue, and that the problems of landlessness, exploitation and rampant violation of human rights be discussed and addressed," the activists said.

"We appeal to you not to lose this opportunity to achieve reforms that the people have been yearning for a long time. We ask both parties, and you, Mr. President, to hold on to this aspiration."

Duterte scrapped the peace talks following the the alleged harassment and killing of the government troops by the communist rebels despite the declaration of ceasefire.

The militant groups, however, asked Duterte not to get "distracted" by the unfortunate events.

Despite the reported incidents, they stressed that the peace talks "must go on."

"The peace talks, as an avenue to address the root causes of armed conflict, is very significant to us and the rest of the Filipino people who yearn for real change in our country," the groups said.

"The Filipino people is with you in this noble endeavor, Mr. President. Be the peacemaker of our time. History will be on your side. Let us continue the quest for a just and lasting peace, Mr. President," they added in a statement. (SunStar Philippines)