Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia-09 Dec 2009- Nonviolent Peaceforce has been officially invited to be part of the International Monitoring Team for the peace process between the Government of the Republic of the Philippines (GRP) and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).
Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP), which has been working in the Philippines since 2007, was invited along with two other non-governmental organizations (the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Mindanao People's Caucus) and four member states (Malaysia, Japan, Brunei and Libya) to be a part of this historic move forward in the peace negotiations. This Comprehensive Compact is intended to help secure and stabilize the situation on the ground in Mindanao through monitoring of agreements signed by both parties, including ceasefire, humanitarian, development, and civilian protection provisions.
"The official invitation to Nonviolent Peaceforce to join the International Monitoring Team is not only a major recognition of NP's work but an important affirmation of the entire concept and practice of unarmed civilian peacekeeping," said NP Executive Director Mel Duncan. "Working closely with our partners on the ground, our country team continues to do their best to protect civilians during this critical phase of the peace process."
NP hopes that resumed formal negotiations will lead to a just and durable peace that can give way to the sustainable peace and development of Mindanao and the Philippines in general. Atif Hameed, Country Director for NP in the Philippines, welcomed the news of the Comprehensive Compact. "Nonviolent Peaceforce is truly honored by the recognition of the GRP and MILF peace panels of its work on behalf of peace," he said. "We look forward to additional positive developments in the peace process."
About Nonviolent Peaceforce
Nonviolent Peaceforce is an unarmed, paid civilian peacekeeping force that is invited to work in conflict zones worldwide. NP is sent to conflict areas to prevent death and destruction and protect human rights, thus creating the space for local groups to struggle nonviolently, enter into dialogue and seek peaceful resolution. Its members include veterans of conflict zones and experienced peacekeepers. With its international headquarters in Brussels and administrative office in Minneapolis, NP has worked in the conflict areas of Sri Lanka, Philippines, and Guatemala, and is currently developing a violence-prevention project in Sudan. For more information, visit www.NonviolentPeaceforce.org.
NP Executive Director Mel Duncan: 651-245-8706
U.S. Communications Coordinator Dale McGowan: 678-516-8296