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PIA Press Release
2005/12/30

Duterte talks to NPAs to observe ceasefire in the region

Davao City (30 December) -- "I do not want the citizenry to observe the New Year with a crippled spirit because of incidents resulting to killings".

This was the wish of Davao City Mayor Rodrigo Duterte who admitted before the Davao media that he did talk to a New People's Army (NPA) leader he named as "Ka Nelson" to observe ceasefire during the year-end celebration.

"I do not hide this from the police and the military," he said.

Duterte said their discussion led to the point of the NPA leader agreeing to stop their operation provided they will not be attacked by the military.

The mayor prior to the press conference met with the police and the military but did not elaborate on what they had discussed.

Duterte however said that they (police and military) must follow the declaration of the government for a ceasefire during December 24 and 25, 31 and January 1, 2006.

"During our discussion with the rebel leader I asked him kung pwede ba tayo mag ceasefire," he said.

"Mayor we have not initiated any offensive or punitive action during Christmas was the reply of the rebel leader," he said.

But Duterte said he could only speak for Region XI kasi may konting say ako within the region.

"I expect the military and the police to follow instructions of the government and I don't think they would violate an order of the government," he said.

He also warned people making attempts to light firecrackers come New Year's eve that they will face the consequence of the law and again told the public that violators will be dealt with accordingly.

He said for as long as I am there (as Mayor) firecrackers will not be heard during the celebration.

He warned as well both the police and military and the public on the firing of guns.

Philippine National Police Davao City director Catalino Cuy said the police already knew the law and anybody found violating will be discharge immediately from the service.

Cuy said sealing of guns are not effective what is important is that they have internalize the law and must practice it.

Lt. Col. Rolly Bautista, 73rd IB commander said firing of guns by his men during New Year is very nil.

He said they have internalize already na bawal ang magpaputok ng baril during Christmas and New Year.

"We would know if they violated the order because no less than the people in the barangay will report to us that there was such an incident in their area," he said.

Similar to what Cuy said they will also automatically act on complaint and immediately order for the discharge of the concerned personnel that violated the ban for firing of guns the next day. (PIA/pdbanzon) [top]

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