NDFP Negotiating Panel interim chair Julieta de Lima: “No basis yet for resuming GRP-NDFP peace negotiations

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(Utrecht, The Netherlands) – NDFP peace panel Interim Chairperson Julie de Lima stressed in a recent interview that there is yet no basis for the resumption of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations in reply to the Marcos II government’s pronouncements that there will be no more peace talks with the NDFP.

“All the issuances of Duterte for preventing peace negotiations (his proclamation terminating these peace negotiations and designating the CPP, NPA and NDFP as “terrorist” organizations and the Anti-Terrorism-Act) continue to be enforced by the Marcos II regime. So far Marcos II wants to continue Duterte’s all-out war policy and the revolutionary movement has no choice but to fight the counterrevolution,” De Lima said.

De Lima, who took over the chairmanship of the NDFP peace negotiating panel from Fidel Agcaoili who passed away in 2021, also said ceasefire first and the laying down of arms for talks to resume are stupid suggestions.

“Why should the CPP and NPA lay down their arms or surrender without having peace negotiations first and without satisfying the people’s just and reasonable demands for full national independence, democracy, social justice, economic development through genuine land reform and national industrialization, expansion of social services, cultural progress and independent foreign policy,” De Lima emphasized.

Localized peace talks?

De Lima also lambasted so-called localized peace talks, which she said, have long been discredited as a failed dirty trick used by the GRP during the 1986 ceasefire talks and also during the time of the National Unification Commission under Haydee Yorac in 1992 when Ramos tried from 1992 to 1995 to evade the application of the The Hague Joint Declaration of 1992.

“It is a stupid idea of Duterte and Marcos that they can divide and destroy the revolutionary movement by talking only with individuals, small groups and small parts of the revolutionary movement in violation of revolutionary discipline and and at grave risks to their lives, limbs and liberty. These “localized peace talks” are actually tricks of entrapment, deception, surrender and violation of revolutionary principles,” De Lima stressed.

Peace talks accomplishments?

De Lima said the GRP-NDFP peace talks have produced only one substantive comprehensive agreement, the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law of 1998, because every regime – from Ramos to the Duterte regime, has prevented the mutual signing and approval of the Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms, the Comprehensive Agreement on Political and Constitutional Reforms and the Comprehensive Agreement on ending the armed conflict and redeployment of the warring forces.

“Every GRP regime has been obsessed with trying to cause the surrender or destruction of the revolutionary movement, frustration of the people’s demands for national independence and democracy and preservation of the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system of oppression and exploitation by US imperialism, domestic feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism,” she further said.

Way forward for the GRP-NDFP peace talks?

If it wants peace negotiations with the NDFP, the Marcos II regime has to do away with the obstacles to peace negotiations put up by Duterte, De Lima pointed out.

“As of now, the NDFP and all its allied forces have no choice but to wage the people’s democratic revolution through protracted people’s war against the hell-bent obsession of the GRP to destroy the revolutionary movement and preserve the unjust, oppressive and exploitative ruling system,” De Lima stated.

Many observers have commented, De Lima said, that the NPA must be able to deliver hard effective blows in order to persuade the GRP to consider peace negotiations as a serious option. The broad masses of the people and entire revolutionary movement must take advantage of the rapid worsening of so many crises of the ruling system in order to strengthen and advance the revolution.

NDFP call to peace advocates

De Lima called on peace advocates and the people’s organizations to continue advocating and demanding that the GRP and NDFP build further on the mutual agreements already made on respect for human rights and international humanitarian law, and to counter those reactionaries who wish nothing else but the surrender or destruction of the revolutionary movement of the people and the preservation of the unjust ruling system of the big compradors, landlords and corrupt bureaucrats who are bound by their own greed for power and wealth and subservience to foreign monopoly capitalism. (NDFP International Information Office)
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Interview with NDFP peace panel Interim Chairperson Julie De Lima on the prospects of peace talks under the Marcos II regime and beyond

1.The NDFP through its Chief Political Consultant, Prof. Jose Maria Sison, has stated that it will talk peace with any president of the GRP. So it seems you are willing to hold peace negotiations with the BBM government. But the BBM government has said “no more peace talks with the CPP-NPA-NDFP”. What can you say to this?

Julie de Lima (JdeL): So far the former officials of the Duterte regime and the current officials of the Marcos II regime have been engaged in propaganda against the peace negotiations between the duly-authorized representatives of the NDFP with those of the GRP. There is yet no basis for the resumption of the GRP-NDFP peace negotiations.

All the issuances of Duterte for preventing peace negotiations (his proclamation terminating these peace negotiation and designating the CPP, NPA and NDFP as “terrorist” organizations and the Anti-Terrorism-Act) continue to be enforced by the Marcos II regime. So far Marcos II wants to continue Duterte’s all-out war policy and the revolutionary movement has no choice but to fight the counterrevolution.

2.What can you say about precondition being floated of having a nationwide ceasefire before talks are held? Now there is a call for the NDFP to lay down their arms before talks are held? Isn’t that tantamount to surrender?

JdeL: All these suggestions are stupid. There can be no nationwide ceasefire without any prior discussions and conditions for it. Why should the CPP and NPA lay down their arms or surrender without having peace negotiations first and without satisfying the people’s just and reasonable demands for full national independence, democracy, social justice, economic development through genuine land reform and national industrialization, expansion of social services, cultural progress and independent foreign policy.

3.What is your take on localized peace talks which is forever being pushed by the GRP?

JdeL: So-called localized peace talks have long been discredited as a dirty trick used by the GRP during the 1986 ceasefire talks and also during the time of the National Unification Commission under Haydee Yorac in 1992.when Ramos tried from 1992 to 1995 to evade the application of the The Hague Joint Declaration of 1992. Localized peace talks so-called have long been a failed dirty trick of the GRP war hawks.

The dirty trick of the GRP has been to entice the NPA and other revolutionaries to talk in the Philippines under the close surveillance of the GRP military and then ask them to surrender with false promises or they are simply arrested and detained on trumped-up criminal charges . Those who fall for the bait, including their friends and relatives, are subjected to surveillance and repressive actions by the military and police.

4.What have the peace talks accomplished aside from what is perceived by the general public as procedural agreements? How did the past talks benefit the people if there were any?

JdeL: The GRP-NDFP never went beyond only one substantive comprehensive agreement, the Comprehensive Agreement on Respect for Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law of 1998. Every GRP regime from Ramos to the Duterte regime has prevented the mutual signing and approval of the Comprehensive Agreement on Social and Economic Reforms, the Comprehensive Agreement on Political and Constitutional Reforms and the Comprehensive Agreement on ending the armed conflict and redeployment of the warring forces.

So far, every GRP regime has been obsessed with trying to cause the surrender or destruction of the revolutionary movement, frustration of the people’s demands for national independence and democracy and preservation of the semicolonial and semifeudal ruling system of oppression and exploitation by US imperialism, domestic feudalism and bureaucrat capitalism.

5.What are the obstacles to achieving successful negotiations? How can these be overcome?

Jdel: I have pointed out the concrete obstacles to the peace negotiations, such as Duterte’s issuances to prevent peace negotiations and the repeated statements of the past officials of the Duterte regime and the current officials of the Marcos II to prevent peace negotiations between the duly-authorized representatives of the NDFP with the GRP representatives at the national level.

It is a stupid idea of Duterte and Marcos that they can divide and destroy the revolutionary movement by talking only with individuals, small groups and small parts of the revolutionary movement in violation of revolutionary discipline and and at grave risks to their lives, limbs and liberty. These “localized peace talks” are actually tricks of entrapment, deception, surrender and violation of revolutionary principles.

6. What can the other side do to overcome such obstacles?

Jdel: The GRP has not yet shown any desire to do away with the obstacles put up by Duterte since November 23, 2017. If it wants peace negotiations with the NDFP, the Marcos II regime has to do away with the obstacles to peace negotiations put up by Duterte.

As of now, the NDFP and all its allied forces have no choice but to wage the people’s democratic revolution through protracted people’s war against the hell-bent obsession of the GRP to destroy the revolutionary movement and preserve the unjust, oppressive and exploitative ruling system.

Many observers have commented that the NPA must be able to deliver hard effective blows in order to persuade the GRP to consider peace negotiations as a serious option. The broad masses of the people and entire revolutionary movement must take advantage of the rapid worsening of so many crises of the ruling system in order to strengthen and advance the revolution.

7. What actions can be taken by the peace advocates and the people’s organizations to make a just lasting peace the people’s agenda?

Jdel: The peace advocates and the people’s organizations can continue advocating and demanding that the GRP and NDFP build further on the mutual agreements already made on respect for human rights and international humanitarian law and to make the second comprehensive agreement on social and economic reforms , the third one on political and constitutional reforms and the fourth one on the final terms of realizing a just and durable peace.

They must counter those reactionaries who wish nothing else but the surrender or destruction of the revolutionary movement of the people and the preservation of the unjust ruling system of the big compradors, landlords and corrupt bureaucrats who are bound by their own greed for power and wealth and subservience to foreign monopoly capitalism.##

AB: NDFP Negotiating Panel interim chair Julieta de Lima: "No basis yet for resuming GRP-NDFP peace negotiations
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