The Malacañang Palace, today, defended the citizenship Moro Islamic Liberation Front Chairman Al Haj Murad and MILF chief negotiator Mohagher Iqbal. “For the past 17 years, or dating back to the former president Fidel Ramos administration, Messrs. Murad and Iqbal have engaged the Philippine government in peace negotiations,” Secretary Herminio Coloma, Jr. said.
The issue on Murad and Iqbal’s citizenship should not be a major deal because the two MILF personalities have been widely recognized even during the term of past administrations that discussed peace with the rebel group, the Palace official explained.
“Throughout this period, their citizenship has never been questioned. In fact, both houses of Congress have recognized their legitimate roles in the peace process by inviting them to appear in congressional hearings,” Coloma said.