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MILF chairman visits Army’s 6th ID headquarters

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By Francis Wakefield

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Chairman Al-Hajj Murad Ebrahim, accompanied by his staff and base Commanders of the Central Committee, visited the Headquarters of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division (6th ID) in Awang, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao on Sunday, January 13.

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Chairman Al-Hajj Murad Ebrahim and Commander of the 6th ID, Major General Cirilito E. Sobejana at the Headquarters of the Army's 6th Infantry Division (6th ID) in Awang, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao on Sunday, January 13. (6th Infantry Division - Kampilan / MANILA BULLETIN)

Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Chairman Al-Hajj Murad Ebrahim and Commander of the 6th ID, Major General Cirilito E. Sobejana at the Headquarters of the Army’s 6th Infantry Division (6th ID) in Awang, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Maguindanao on Sunday, January 13.
(6th Infantry Division – Kampilan / MANILA BULLETIN)

The momentous visit of Murad was the first visit made by a top-ranking MILF official after five decades of struggle against the Philippine government.

A military honor was accorded Murad upon his arrival with the Commander of the 6th ID, Major General Cirilito E. Sobejana, as military host.

A short meeting was also conducted at the hall of flags, 6th ID to discuss security updates on the ground.

“I am happy that as the 35th Commander of 6th ID, it is the very first time that the Chairman of MILF visited the home of Kampilan with his staffs and base Commanders,” Sobejana said.

“The visit is very timely, as the plebiscite is upcoming, rest assured that we will provide a democratic space for everybody to cast their votes and we will also let democracy work.”

“Rest assured of our full support in all peace initiatives and development progress of Chairman Murad as he assumes the leadership of Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao,” Sobejana added.

For his part, Murad said they were happy that security forces of the government welcomed them as a partner working towards for peace.

“As declared by former AFP Chief of Staff General Carlito Galvez, during his visit in Camp Darapanan, we have already ended our war with the Philippine government”, the MILF Chairman said.

”I would like everybody to know, that even before our late MILF chairman Hassim Salamat  have always been very persistence in his pronouncement that the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine Government is not our enemy, because our enemy is oppression, our enemy is exploitation, and our enemy is injustice.”

“We are all fighting for all of this, and it is just incidental that the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine Government is the structure of the other side. We affirm that until now we are not enemies, we are in fact partners in finding peace and sustainable progress in our area. We know that we have the same objective to defend our country, to defend our people and defend the progress, so we are very confident that we can be a longtime partner until we achieve our aspiration,” he added.

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