National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Cotabato, Philippines

Church-backed rebel decommissioning program opens in Philippines

The Philippine government on Tuesday started the Catholic church-backed process of decommissioning members of the country's largest Muslim rebel group.

The process was bringing the Moro Islamic Liberation Front a step closer to its goal of self-determination, after more than four decades of fighting. But the effort still must contend with Christians who are anxious about a proposed law that would create a self-governing region in the country's Muslim-majority south.

Filipinos seek answers on peace deal between government, Muslim rebels

Some Catholics in Cotabato are taking a wait-and-see attitude toward the recently signed preliminary agreement between the Philippine government and the country's largest Muslim rebel group.

While welcoming the end of fighting that has claimed more than 120,000 lives and displaced millions more over 40 years, Christians in the region are awaiting details of the deal and said they want an explanation about what the future holds for them.

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