Norwegian-brokered Peace Talk Shows Results in the Philippines

The New Peoples’ Army (NPA) released  October 8 2011 four jail guards in the hinterlands of Magpet town,
North Cotabato, after 11 weeks in captivity and ahead of the resumption
of peace talks scheduled later this month, according to the online media, mb.com.ph.

The release of the guards is seen as a confidence-building measure
for the Norwegian-brokered peace talks, which have been stalled since
June.

A certain “Ka Jody” of the Herminio Alfonso Command Front 53 signed
the release order for the four Bureau of Jail Management and Penology
(JMP) officers nine days after National Democratic Front (NDF) Panel
Chairperson Luis Jalandoni approved of the release.

Turned over to representatives of the International Committee of the
Red Cross (ICRC) around 1:30 p.m. yesterday were Ozamis City Jail Warden
Inspector Eric Llamasares, Cagayan de Oro City Jail Warden Inspector
Murphy Todyog, and Senior Jail Officers Rolando Bajuyo and Rogelio
Begontes.

“We did not expect this thing to happen. We are so grateful the NPAs
treated us so well. They treated us like their own brothers,” said a
teary-eyed Bajuyo.

The four, who were abducted last July 21 on a highway in Bukidnon
province, were in high spirits as they reunited with their families.

The rebels are still holding a town mayor and his two bodyguards who were abducted in August.

The release of the guards is seen as a confidence-building measure
for the Norwegian-brokered peace talks, which have been stalled since
June. (With a report from AP)

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