PRESIDENT Rodrigo Roa Duterte threatened Sunday that government will withdraw in the peace talks if the New People's Army will not stop using landmines.
“Either you stop it or we stop talking,” the President said in a news conference held at the wake of four Philippine Army infantry troops killed in two separate encounters in Compostela Valley on Friday against alleged NPA members.
"I'm not pleading this time. That's an ultimatum," he said.
Duterte said he would ask the government peace panel to include in the agenda of the August 20-27 peace talks the stop of using landmines.
“I would insist you include the landmines or else no talks at all, then we fight for another 45 years," he said.
"I'm now invoking the Geneva Conventions. It is part of the international law, not only of the Philippines, but around the world," he said, referring to the ban on the use of landmines.
The Armed Forces of the Philippines’ Eastern Mindanao Command said in a news release Saturday that a landmine explosion killed three of the soldiers.
Eastmincom condemned “in the highest form the deliberate use of landmine by the NPAs which is in violation of the International Humanitarian Law.” (SDR/Sunnex)