Uphold a Culture of Peace!
Sustain Dialogues and Agreements!
Stop the Vicious Cycle of Violence-No More Wars in Mindanao!
“An eye for an eye, a tooth for a tooth,”- This is the apparent State of the Nation’s Peace! (Armed Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) fighters arrive at their camp at Indanan, in southern Jolo, Philippines for a meeting with the high level mission from the Organization of Islamic Conference (OIC). (Photo: Therence Koh / AFP-Getty Images www.worldpress.org/)
Weeks after the State of the Nation Address of our National Leadership, our country is on the military offensive. No less than the commander-in-chief has given the go-signal to conduct punitive operations against the perpetrators of the crime against Philippine soldiers who were said to be conducting rescue operations on behalf of Fr. Giancarlo Bossi, PIME.(Philippine troops on patrol on the island of Basilan in the southern Philippines. [AFP] /
The killing of the soldiers and the beheading of some are truly abhorrent acts. But why should we follow the way of violence, resorting to similarly abhorrent acts in order to “correct” violence? Killing is immoral and wrong, whichever side is doing it – rebels or soldiers. We do not want to have another peace crisis in Mindanao. In war, there are no real winners – only opposing parties perpetuating the cycle of violence. Poor civilians, caught in the crossfire, suffer severe human rights’ violations.(kuha mula: homepage2.nifty.com/.../
When will we ever learn our lesson from the decades of wars in Mindanao? Why do we easily forget the pains and struggles among affected civilians? Why can we not see that poverty, war, violence, compounds the suffering of civilians in the areas of conflict?
We, the Justice, Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission- Association of Major Religious Superiors in the Philippines, strongly urge the Philippine government to persevere in its resolve to continue dialogue and peace negotiations despite the pressure for revenge over the recent bloodbath. We also urge the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the Moro National Liberation Front (MNLF) to honor its commitment to peace by returning to the negotiating table despite the resurgence of yet another military campaign.
We seek justice for the deaths of the duty-bound soldiers not out of revenge but through peaceful means, upholding law and order, in the same way that we seek justice for the many civilian victims of wars of aggression.
We need to risk and begin trusting each other as the guiding value during these times of ambiguity, if indeed we are committed to a lasting solution to the conflict in Mindanao.
We urge all peace-loving citizens of the country to pray for a peaceful resolution to the impending conflict and contribute to the living out of the Gospel values of peace and love even for “enemies”. Difference in ideology or faith is not what causes conflict but we ourselves, who consciously negate peaceful co-existence in our given diversity of beliefs and lifestyles.
No more wounds and death! No more violence and tears! Live out our passion for Peace in Mindanao!
Signatories: Sr. Josefa Azarcon, SSJ Ciervas de San Jose Fr. Eduardo Apungan, CMF JPIC Coordinator Claretian Missionary Fathers (CMF) Sr. Angie Villanueva, RC Congregation of Our Lady of Retreat in the Cenacle (RC) Charito Jocson Pinalas ExecutiveSecretary JPICC-AMRSP Augustinian Missionaries of the Philippines (AMP) Dominican Family Justice Peace and Care of Creation-Asia Pacific Region Mission Society of Saint Columban (MSSC) Xaverian Missionaries of Christ Jesus (XCMJ) Xaverian Missionaries (SX)