Mindanao is geographically home to 13 ethnic groups.
The Mindanao conflict dates back 40 years.
The conflict arises in the Philippines when Moro people are reduced to a minority.
Many people suffered from prolonged conflicts between Moro and Christians in southern Mindanao. So the Moros formed a group for independence in southern Mindanao. That’s how the Moro-Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) was created.
There were 120,000 casualties in Mindanao over 50 years. After 20 years of negotiations with the Philippine government, the civil war ended.
Motive for that was the Civil Peace Agreement on January 24, 2014.
To commemorate this, they built a peace memorial inside the MILF, designated January 24 as Peace Day, and continued to attend the Peaceful Conference of HWPL.
The process of continuing the ongoing and practical efforts for peace was not easy, but they really tried hard to make it. In the process, they thanked HWPL and Chairman Man-hee Lee for leading the world peace movement.
The Chairman Lee said, “We are transcending borders, races, and religions for the end of war and peace in the global village. Just as the light, rain and air in the sky give life to many people, we are trying to make peace happen to everyone.”
“We are a family of peace born in this era and making peace. Do you want conflict or peace?”
There was a special event in Cotabato City, where the third peace memorial was erected. One of the combatants returned the weapon, melted it, made a globe, and decorated it on the monument.
Most of the former fighters said they would farm or run small businesses. They are looking forward to spending more time with their families and moving away from the familiar fights.
In each session of the 1st National Peace Convention, there will be speeches followed by an open forum to produce a resolution from each sector group.
These resolutions will be consolidated into one which will be presented to the President during the second plenary session.
The event is organized and spearheaded by the Volunteer Individuals for Peace (VIP), a local peace organization chaired by Dr. Ronald Adamat, Commissioner of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).
Through the partnership of VIP and CHED with HWPL, the introduction of peace education at the national level and collaboration of peace activities at the international level have been pursued.
I am sure that today’s event will be of great help in achieving peace in the Philippines. We’re going to join the music festival!
I hope you can participate in the scene of peace and develop your sensitivity to peace.