Palace: Use of aliases not the core of peace negotiation

“The real names of the MILF negotiators are of course known to the Philippine government,” Deputy Presidential Spokesperson Abigail Valte said. Use of aliases is “a matter of personal security.”

“When the peace process started in 1997, the MILF negotiators like previous rebel group negotiators — notably from the NDF (National Democratic Front), the MNLF (Moro National Liberation Front), the CPLA (Cordillera People’s Liberation Army)— they were allowed the courtesy to continue using their aliases that they used as underground,” the presidential spokesperson added.

”So, at least for us, the BBL should be discussed on the basis of the merits of the law itself, or of the draft bill itself, and not other attendant issues that may be related but perhaps are not really at the core of the main points or the core points of the BBL draft itself,” Valte noted.

However, Senator Marcos said “This mocks the entire process and puts in serious question the very sincerity of the rebels to enter into peace with us.”

“By using a nom de guerre, and claiming to represent the MILF, this person known as Iqbal places the entire peace process in jeopardy because he lacks the legal status to even represent and negotiate with the government,” Marcos explains.