CHILD focused groups and rights advocates welcomed Duterte’s statement to resume peace negotiations with the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDFP).

We welcome the probability of the continuation of the peace talks between the NDFP and the Philippine government. It’s a positive development as it gives both parties a favorable atmosphere to create resolutions on how to address the decades-old conflict in the country. ,general.

In particular, the peace negotiations must serve as a venue in discussing the rights and welfare of Filipino people, especially the marginalized sectors where majority of children belong to. Before Duterte terminated the peace negotiations, the last round of talks focused on the discussion of the Comprehensive Agreement on Socioeconomic Reforms, a document which tackles how to solve the basic social problems that the Filipino people continue to endure like poverty and inequality.

However, we urge Duterte to show utmost sincerity in pursuing peace talks with the NDFP and should avoid imposing preconditions which may affect the viability of the resumption. Duterte must also respect all the previously signed agreements with the NDFP including The Hague Joint Declaration, Comprehensive Agreement of the Respect of Human Rights and International Human Rights law, among others.

Moreover, wen note that child right advocates must maximize the peace negotiations to highlight the plight of Filipino children and their impoverished families – peasants and workers.

We urge the public to heighten the call for the continuation of the peace talks and to actively participate in the struggle for a just and lasting peace. --Salinlahi Alliance for Children’s Concerns