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Speech of H.E. Chairman Nur Misuari
before the Senior Officials’ Meeting Preparatory
to the 28th Session of the Islamic Conference
of Foreign Ministers

at Al-Salam Holiday Inn, Jeddah
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
6-8 Rabiul Awwal, 1422H.
(29-31 May 2001)

                          
                            
MNLF Chairman Nur Misuari at the OIC Senior Officers' Meeting 
                                                  in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

Mr. Chairman,
Excellencies,

            We would like to join the esteemed delegates to this Preparatory Meeting of the 28th ICFM in Bamako, Mali, in welcoming and congratulating His Excellency Abdelouahed Belkeziz, the new OIC Secretary General, as well as the election of the distinguished head of the delegation of the Republic of Mali to chair this meeting of the OIC Senior Officials. So, too, the election of the respective heads of the Arab Republic of Egypt, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan and the State of Palestine as deputy Chairmen and Malaysia as the Rapporteur.

            Excellencies: I came to this meeting as the head of a 5-man delegation and I have a very simple message to convey to you for your enlightenment and guidance. That since the adoption of the historic resolution of the 9th Islamic Summit Conference in Doha, Qatar, in late November last year, we see signs of being drawn back into the vicious cycle that the 9th Islamic Summit Conference Resolution wanted to avoid.

            The Summit Resolution mandated the OIC Ministerial Committee of the Seven to call a Tripartite Meeting at the highest possible level in order to draw up the specific timetable for the eventual establishment and delivery to the MNLF Leadership and our people of the so-called “just and genuine political autonomy” called for in the Tripoli Agreement of December 1976 and the Manila Implementing Peace Agreement of September 1996.

            Except for the separate Preparatory Meeting called by the Manila-based ambassadors of the OIC Ministerial Committee of the Seven, headed by the distinguished ambassador of Indonesia, H.E. Ambassador Soeratmin, no Tripartite Meeting has been held so far. We do not know why this was so. And yet the Summit Resolution called precisely for such meeting before the end of the first quarter of this year. That means before the end of last March.

            It is mainly for this reason that I came to attend this Senior Officials meeting and the forthcoming 28th ICFM intend to do to resolve this dilemma. Our people are awaiting our return and we are anxious to know what delightful message we can possibly bring back to them.

            For Your Excellencies information, the confusion and sense of hopelessness and frustration of our people have deepened and become all the more serious and exacerbated. Left to itself, this situation could turn out to be quite dangerous in the end.

            In fact, when I called for a series of MNLF Regional Congresses, followed by the Fourth Bangsamoro People’s National Congress, to ask them for guidance on what to submit to the so-called forthcoming Tripartite Meeting, some young people seized the occasion to manifest their frustration and demanded for us to return back to the path of self-determination and independence that we put aside by virtue of the historic 1974 Kuala Lumpur Resolution.

            Alhamduliilah, in response to my address before the Plenary Session of the 2,000-strong Bangsamoro People’s National Congress, it was agreed that they keep their decision in abeyance until “an auspicious” condition shall have arisen. I suggested that they should be patient and wait for the outcome of the Tripartite Meeting to prevent them from taking drastic action.

            Both the Chief Intelligence of the Southern Command of the Philippine Armed Forces and the Air Force intelligence Chief based in Zamboanga City wwent to visit me at my office in Kabatangan Complex, Zamboanga City, to inquire into the status of the said Congress Resolution. They returned home apparently convinced that the situation was not grave - that there was no cause for anxiety or alarm.

             Likewise, the advisers of President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo and also of Vice President Teofisto Guingona; both of them went to see me and stayed with us for several days. And they even addressed the one-day extraordinary meeting of the Bangsamoro People’s National Congress. Presidential Adviser Jesus Dureza and Vice Presidential Adviser for Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Sanchez Ali, both spoke before the Extraordinary Meeting and both of them could bear witness to the enthusiasm and seriousness of the prevailing mood of the meeting.

            And for this reason, we sent message to Her Excellency, President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo, suggesting for her to cleanse her government of such iniquitous elements who are out to exploit her kindness and tolerance and the awesome power of her Office to the detriment of our most friendly and cordial relationship with her Government and the peace in Mindanao. Likewise, to the Vice President of the Philippine Republic.

            This is a test as to the seriousness and sincerity of Her Excellency’s formal commitment to implement the GRP-OIC-MNLF Peace Agreement and avoid being perceived as engaging in a double-dealing activity towards us.

            In addition, we also advised her to drop the new condition unilaterally attached by Her Excellency’s Government to the full implementation of the peace agreement in letter and spirit. For we believe that demanding for the unity of the MNLF and the MILF as a pre-condition for such full implementation may only exacerbate the stumbling block to the success of our peace process. For we know very well that the MILF leaders have reaffirmed their well-known position that it cannot acknowledge and accept let alone support the GRP-OIC-MNLF Peace Agreements. For it will do violence to their demand for self-determination and independence and the establishment of a separate Islamic State.

            Therefore, we appeal to this August Assembly to come up with a rather pragmatic or realistic policy to ensure the speedy implementation of the Islamic Summit Conference Resolution in Doha, Qatar, for the sake of a durable and lasting peace in the Bangsamoro Homeland and the general welfare of our oppressed Bangsamoro people.

            Before I conclude, I would like to extend my most profound thanks and gratitude to H.E. Ambassador Soeratmin and his colleagues in the OIC Ministerial Committee of the Seven for taking the cudgel for us and for pressuring the Government of the Republic of the Philippines to undertake their binding international commitment and obligation to establish and deliver genuine political autonomy for our people and to the MNLF leadership.

            Mr. Chairman, thank you. Wa Billahi Tawfik Wal Hidayah Wassalamu Alaikum Warahmatullahi Wabarakatuh.

 

 

Homepage O History of the Bangsamoro People O The MNLF O Organization O Support from the OIC O The Tripoli Agreement
The Jeddah Accord 
O The Final Peace Agreement O The 4th Bangsamoro National Congress O The 5th Bangsamoro National Congress
 The UN Initiative 
O The MNLF-MILF Merger O Speeches of Chairman Misuari O The August 14, 2001 ARMM Plebiscite
 The November 26, 2001 ARMM Election
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Copyright 2001 by MNLF, Cotabato City