Muslim rebels want Philippine constitution amended

11:21, September 24, 2010      

Email | Print | Subscribe | Comments | Forum 

Muslim rebels who have been waging a more-than decade old war with the Philippine government want to have the country's constitution amended as part of their final peace agreement.

The amendment will cater to their demand to create a sub-state in Mindanao in Southern Philippines where majority of the population are Muslims, Mohaqher Iqbal, the chairman of the newly- reconstituted peace panel of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front ( MILF), said Friday.

"The government will have to amend the Constitution. Constituents in sub-state areas that would form part of the proposed sub-state would be consulted," Iqbal said.

Once the sub-state is created, the Moro people will have control on all aspects, except on four: national defense, foreign affairs, currency and coinage, as well as postal services.

In effect, Iqbal said the central government still has the authority to deploy at the sub-state because it has the national defense jurisdiction over the sub-state.

"The sub-state is still under the Philippines. This is not (an) independent state," he said.

The MILF has been fighting government troops for decades to establish a self-rule Muslim state in the south of the predominantly Catholic country.

Peace talks between the government and the MILF stalled in August 2008 following the aborted signing of the Memorandum of Agreement on Ancestral Domain.

Efforts are being undertaken by both sides to revive the talks. The central government of the Philippines has expressed its willingness to resume talks with the MILF. A final peace deal with the government will touch the issues of autonomy and the civil settlement of the separatist group's 11,800-strong guerrilla fighters.

Source: Xinhua


  • Do you have anything to say?


Special Coverage
  • Premier Wen Jiabao visits Hungary, Britain, Germany
  • From drought to floods
Major headlines
Editor's Pick
  • Chinese Navy soldiers hold an evening party marking the upcoming 62nd National Day aboard Chinese Navy hospital ship "Peace Ark" in the Pacific on Sept. 28, 2011. The Chinese National Day falls on Oct. 1. (Xinhua/Zha Chunming)
  • Photo taken on Sept. 30, 2011 shows the crowd at the plaza of Beijing Railway Station in Beijing, capital of China. The railway transportation witnessed a travel peak with the approach of the seven-day National Day holidays on Friday. (Xinhua)
  • A man wearing high-heel shoes takes part in the 3rd annual Walk a Mile in Her Shoes, an event when men literally walk in women's shoes to raise awareness about ending violence against women, at Yonge-Dundas Square in Toronto, Canada, Sept. 29, 2011. (Xinhua/Zou Zheng)
  • Photo taken on Sept. 29, 2011 shows a cargo ship in danger on the sea near Zhuhai City, south China's Guangdong Province. Cargo ship Fangzhou 6 of Qingzhou of southwest China's Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region lost control after water stormed into its cabin due to Typhoon Nesat on the sea near Zhuhai Thursday, leaving 12 crew members in danger. Rescuers rushed to the ship and saved them by using a helicopter. (Xinhua)
  • Actress Gong Li poses for L'Officiel Magazine. (Xinhua Photo)
  • Demonstrators from the Occupy Wall Street campaign hold placards as they march in the financial district of New York September 29, 2011. After hundreds of protesters were denied access to some areas outside the New York Stock Exchange on September 17, demonstrators set up a rag-tag camp three blocks away. Zuccotti Park is a campground festooned with placards and anti-Wall Street slogans. The group is adding complaints of excessive police force against protesters and police treatment of ethnic minorities and Muslims to its grievances list, which includes bank bailouts, foreclosures and high unemployment. (Xinhua/Reuters Photo)
Hot Forum Discussion