Saturday, October 1, 2016

Justice needed to have lasting peace, says MILF Chair in international confab

From the Website of MILF

Justice needed to have lasting peace, says MILF Chair in international confab

MILF Chairman Alhaj Murad Ebrahim underscored on September 19 the search for justice as a necessary condition to attain permanent peace in the world’s conflict-affected areas.
Speaking on the second day of the International Meeting for Peace in Assissi, Italy, Ebrahim explained before world religious and political leaders as well as renowned peace advocates that there can only be lasting peace if there is justice and that “peace is underpinned by justice.”

Ebrahim said that it is precisely the reason why peace, although it is within sight, remains to be out of reach, a situation which he described as a ‘conundrum.’ 

In the said gathering of representatives of the world’s religions, Ebrahim emphasized that the twin and inseparable search for both justice and peace is “essentially the message … and the vision-mission of Islam.”
Since the MILF, he said, believes in the principle of dignified justice and peace, it has to promote and seek justice for the Bangsamoro, similar to what Christians and other religious groups are doing in other parts of the world to pursue their legitimate rights.

In the pursuit of justice and peace, Ebrahim said that the MILF from the very beginning has been following the true teachings of Islam which abhors terrorism and commands its followers to be “kind and recognize humanity regardless of religious affiliations.”

In support of this, he quoted this verse from the Holy Qu’an: “God forbiddeth you not those who warred not against you on account of religion and drove you not out of your homes that ye should show them kindness and deal justly with them. Lo! God loveth the just dealers.” (Al-Mumtahinah, 60:8)

The MILF struggle to address and resolve the conflict in Mindanao is also in compliance with the teachings of Islam, Ebrahim also noted.

Inspite of the frustrations over the non-passage of the Bangsamoro Basic Law in the previous administration, Ebrahim said that their belief in a negotiated political settlement as the “most civilized and practical way” of conflict-resolution is what sustains their hope that peace would someday dawn upon the Bangsamoro.

The MILF chieftain expressed hope that the International Peace Meeting would “highlight the urgency for peace in all areas visited and ravished by perennial conflicts.” 

He was invited to the said international conference by The Community of Sant’ Egidio  thru its Secretary General Professor Alberto Quattarucci and Professor Marco Impagliazzo.

The Community of Sant’ Egidio is a Christian community  that was founded in Rome in 1968. Its charitable works also led it to be a well-regarded mediator in peace negotiation. Sant’ Egidio  up to the present is one of the members of the International Contact Group (ICG) supporting the peace process, and even during the height of talks between GPH and MILF in Kuala Lumpur, it continuously sent its representative.

During the panel discussion, Chairman Ebrahim shared the presidential table with the General Secretary of the World Council of Churches Olav Fykse Tveit; 1997 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Jody Williams (USA); 2011 Nobel Peace Prize laureate Tawakkol Karman (Yemen); Observer Research Foundation Chairman Sudheendra Kulkami (India); KAICIID General Secretary Faisal bin Muaammar (Saudi Arabia); Cardinal John Olorunfemi Onaiyekan (Archbishop of Abuja, Nigeria), and Mindanao’s own Cardinal Orlando B. Quevedo.

The MILF Chairman also had the chance to meet briefly Pope Francis who was the main speaker for the final ceremonies of the 3-day event.

Chairman Ebrahim thanked the Pope for his statement of support to the GPH-MILF Peace Process during the latter’s visit to the Philippines in January 2015. 

MILF Website

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