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Philippine Court Prohibits Government, Muslim Rebels to Sign Deal

ICC Note:

The controversial memorandum of agreement to be signed by the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front has been issued a temporary restraining order by the Philippine Supreme Court. The deal would create a Muslim “homeland” in Mindanao, one of the most violent areas of the country. Many fear the deal would result in further violence against Christians in the region.

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8/4/08 Philippines (AHN) The Philippine Supreme Court on Monday issued a temporary restraining order to prohibit the signing of a memorandum of agreement between the Arroyo administration and the Muslim secessionist group Moro Islamic Liberation Front over ancestral domain.

Under the deal, the MILF will be allowed to create the Bangsamoro Juridical Entity (BJE) or homeland in southern Philippines, particularly in the island of Mindanao, one of the most volatile regions in the country.

Opponents of the deal said the BJE “diminishes the territorial integrity of the country and the power to govern the so-called Muslim “ancestral land” will be within the purview of the executive department.

They fear the deal would alienate some sectors in the region and would further spark unrest from the Christian majority that comprises the island, as well as other tribes in Mindanao.

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