On the eve of the 46th anniversary of the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP), the Armed Forces of the Philippines on Thursday renewed its call for the group and its armed wing, the New People’s Army, to end armed struggle, saying they have been harmful to the very communities they purportedly wish to help.
“The senseless attacks perpetrated by the NPA against peaceful communities and infrastructure projects have caused more suffering and denied the people of development in the countryside. We must reflect why we have allowed ourselves and our communities to endure forty six years of bloody violence and senseless deaths among fellow Filipinos,” military information chief Lt. Col. Harold Cabunoc said in a press release.
The CPP-NPA is still waging a protracted war in the Philippines, which is considered as the longest running insurgency in Asia.
The military estimates the CPP-NPA membership at about 4,000.
But Cabunoc enjoined the CPP to lay down their arms to foster peace in the country.
“We can have the choice between a better life for ourselves and our children by embracing peace or continued violence and poverty through bloody armed conflict. The door for reconciliation and healing remains open to all our misguided brothers who want to embrace peace,” he said.
“It has been proven that nobody is a real winner in bloody armed conflicts. We are witness to the endless misery experienced by our own people who are caught in the crossfire,” Cabunoc added.
The AFP, as well as the Philippine National Police has suspended its operations against the CPP and the NPA, in celebration of the Christmas season.
The ceasefire will be from December 19, 2014 to January 19, 2015.