About

July 17, 2016

justpeace masthead

JustPeacePH is an an international platform that supports the Philippine peace process.

It has special emphasis in reaching out to individuals, organisations and institutions which have advocacies on peace and issue-based people’s concerns in various capacities outside of the country. In particular, JustPeacePH aims to seek support from individuals and organisations in multilateral organisations, people’s organisations, civil society organisations, academe, development institutions as well as governments across the globe.

Background

The victory of Rodrigo Duterte in the 2016 Presidential Elections underscored the Filipino people’s strong rejection of the US-Aquino regime. Worsening poverty, corruption and criminality have been key issues which fueled the people’s rejection of the administration of Benigno Aquino III. This victory also provides a historic opportunity for the peace process to resume and lead to substantial gains for the people.

In building his own administration, Pres. Duterte has reached out to various sectors and political groups, including the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP). His association with the Left is an open book, and has committed to work for the release of all political prisoners, resumption of the peace talks between the National Democratic Front of the Philippines (NDF) and the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) peace talks and, in an unprecedented move, offered several key Cabinet position  to the CPP which the latter has then headhunted among progressives and submitted names.

The resumption of the peace talks is a significant move to broaden and strengthen support for the Filipino people’s desire for a just and lasting peace. Preliminary talks were held even prior to Duterte’s inauguration and formal talks are set to resume July this year. This indicates efforts of both parties to come to substantial agreements, including the Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms (CASER), which is second of the four substantive agreements in the NDF-GRP peace talks. Confidence-building measures such as the release of political prisoners have also been discussed last month. The President has also declared his openness to the building of a democratic coalition government with all progressive forces.

A just and lasting peace bodes well for the people. It lays the ground in building a genuinely democratic society that allows for people to exercise and claim their rights. Just peace is not merely the absence of war. The struggle for just peace entails addressing the root causes of armed conflict and rests on the people’s assertion of their collective rights.

With this comes the urgency to amplify calls for just peace, the release of all political prisoners and addressing the roots of armed conflict. ##