Philippines: August 5, 2003


 MILF and the government have agreed to peace talks and, more importantly,  third-party peace monitors from Moslem countries like Bangladesh, Bahrain, Brunei and Libya.  MILF also announced that it's 61 year old leader died of natural causes on July 13th. He has been replaced by his younger deputy. The MILF faces serious discipline problems, as many younger members are into Islamic radicalism, banditry or both. The Moslem population in the south is more clan based and given to clan warfare, even without organizations like the MILF. So the unrest will continue even if there is a peace deal with the MILF.

In several incidents, two NPA rebels were  killed while NPA kidnapped five people. 

In the south, police raids led to the arrest of three Abu Sayyaf members.


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