» 05/27/2013, 00.00
Mindanao, at least 20 killed in clashes between the army and Islamic rebels
The worst affected province is Sulu, on the border with Malaysia. The clashes are the most serious since the signing of the Framework Agreement between the Philippine government and rebels of the Moro Islamic Liberation in November 2012. Extremist groups belonging to al-Qaeda linked Abu Sayyaf foment violence. Fear of attacks against civilian targets in the capital of Jolo.
Mindanao: four Christians killed, a fifth missing
Yesterday an armed group ambushed a bus in Lanao del Sur, stronghold of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. The group robbed passengers and then shot the men. The Philippine Church urges an accord between the government and MILF to avoid an escalation in violent attacks.
Dialogue between ethnic and religious groups only path for peace in Mindanao, Filipino priest says
For Fr Leo S Pepito, building up “interpersonal relations” must go hand in hand with political efforts and socio-economic development. The promotion of a “dialogue for life” is part of the Catholic Church’s mission.
MILF condemns humanitarian workers abduction as no one claims responsibility
The Moro Islamic Liberation Front offers to help in getting the release of the kidnap victims. Abu Sayyaf has not claimed responsibility for the action and local sources exclude politics or religion were involved. Police is investigating the possible involvement of an employee working at a prison the three workers had just visited.
Gun culture reaching young Catholics in Basilan
Bishop Jumoad denounces the trend, expresses apprehension about the situation. Young men are in fact taking up arms to defend themselves as a result of the growing violence between the army and MILF rebels. Villagers are fleeing their homes fearful of new attacks.
Humanitarian emergency in Mindanao refugee camps
The Philippine army offensive against Abu Sayyaf puts into question the resumption of talks with MILF. Government and the World Food Program aid to refugee camps inadequate aggravating conditions for over 12 thousand refugees. Five deaths from disease in recent weeks. Harsh criticism of the bishops who want a definitive ceasefire between Philippine army and MILF.
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