Army official open to local peace talks

JAMINDAN, Capiz -- Brigadier General Dinoh Dolina, newly-installed commander of the 3rd Infantry Division (ID) of the Philippine Army, said he is open to facilitate a localized peace talks.

Dolina, who assumed his post in rites held at Camp General Macario Peralta here Friday, December 29, said he believes that a local government unit should pursue peace talks, and the Army is willing to help in the negotiation process.

He urged the communist rebels to surrender because the government troopers will always be ready to fight if they choose to continue the armed struggle.

“We are here to protect the people and secure the state. There is no need to shed blood in order to attain peace,” he added.

Two months ago, President Rodrigo Duterte said that the revival of talks between the government and the communist party was “not good for the country,” prompting him to cancel the peace negotiations with the Communist Party of the Philippines-New People’s Army-National Democratic Front (CPP-NPA-NDF).

Dolina said he is prioritizing the marching order of the higher command to neutralize the rebels in his area of responsibility by next year.

He added that a battalion from Mindanao will hopefully return to the region next year and an additional battalion will also be organized as part of the force multipliers, who greatly helps the troopers in maintaining peace in the island.

He also urged the cooperation of the public and valuable support of all stakeholders to achieve their goal.

Dolina, previously assigned at the Armed Forces of the Philippines (AFP) headquarters in Camp Aguinaldo, Quezon City, took over the post of Major General Jon Aying effective December 29.

Aying, who is set to retire on December 31, served as commander of the 3rd ID for 13 months. He will turn 56 on Sunday.

Aying also served as commander of both the 61st Infantry Battalion and 303rd Infantry Brigade in Negros Occidental.

In Friday’s ceremony led by Lieutenant General Rolando Joselito Bautista, commanding general of the Philippine Army, Aying was given a distinguished service star for his meritorious and exemplary efforts in the service.

He also received an encased flag, frame of medals, and a token.

Aying thanked everyone who became part of his 37 years in the military service.

He was also recognized and commended by Bautista for his accomplishments and contribution to the welfare of society.

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