PRESIDENT Rodrigo Duterte said that he has given up engaging communist rebels in peace negotiations, dismissing the effort as really “useless”.
“With the NPAs, I am the one who surrendered. I said I will stop talking to them because it is really useless,” Duterte said Sunday night during the PDP-Laban campaign rally in Cagayan de Oro City.
“We have been talking for the last 30 years. And they have been trying to destroy the legitimate government since 53 years ago. We will never achieve anything out of it,” he added.
Duterte made the remark just days after he officially announced slamming the door on the possible resumption of peace talks with the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP).
He asked the CPP to just “talk to the next President” if they want to go back to the negotiating table.
The President said he has told the military and police to “finish” the insurgency.
“It could be a dream that we still have hope. Fifty-three years would tell you that it amounts to nothing. So I told the soldiers and the police, ‘Let’s finish this. It’s either we surrender or they do. It’s either they’ll defeat us or we’ll defeat them’,” he said.
“They want armed struggle…the two words connote violence,” he added.