UNITED Nations Secretary-General António Guterres on Friday congratulated the Philippines for establishing a government body that will push forward the formal creation of an autonomous region and pledged continued support to bring lasting peace in Mindanao.
He assured the Philippines of the UN’s continued support in implementing the Bangsamoro Organic Law and helping to “build the capacity of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority to achieve peace, democratic governance, and respect for human rights.”
Following the plebiscite confirmations of 21 January and 6 February, Mr. Guterres called the Bangsamoro Organic Law “a landmark achievement on the road to lasting peace in the Southern Philippines,” as well as “a historic occasion for all people from the Philippines.”
In addition to the Government, he commended the Islamic Liberation Front, civil society groups, local communities and the Bangsamoro Transition Commission itself, which was first tasked some six years ago to help draft what in 2018 became the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.
The de facto seat of the Autonomous Region, which consists of five mostly Muslim provinces, has its own government.
Japan on Bangsamoro
The Japanese government on Friday welcomed the establishment of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA) saying it is an “important milestone” that marks considerable progress in the Mindanao peace process.
In a statement, the Embassy said “Japan will continue to strengthen its support as the peace process progresses to ensure that the people of Mindanao can feel the benefit of peace.”
The same statement stressed it is critically important to ensure that this progress in the peace process leads to a visible improvement in the living condition of the people of Mindanao.
“This is why Japan, as a partner that has been consistently supporting the peace process for more than ten years, intends to seize this opportunity to further enhance its support to Mindanao,” it said.