Statement of the Inter-Religious Solidarity Movement for Peace in Support of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro

On the Threshold of Genuine Peace

Genuine, lasting and long-wanted peace for and by the people of Mindanao, most especially the Bangsamoros, is now within our reach and grasp and possible in our present generation. All patriotic Bangsamoros and Mindanaoans justifiably and joyfully celebrate, therefore, the forging and signing of the Framework Agreement on the Bangsamoro (FAB) in Malaysia and Manila, respectively.

The Agreement has been described as a roadmap to this new, unfolding chapter of peace. Let us light that road as we hand in hand journey its way with our sincere commitment and cooperation to help realize its vision and objectives, to reach its golden destination.

For its part, the Inter- Religious Solidarity Movement for Peace (IRSMP), consisting of over 60 individual and organizational members from various sectors and faiths, firmly declares its support to the Agreement and its principals – the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and Philippine government peace negotiators, political leaders and working groups such as the International Contact Group, mediator Malaysia and others. They have worked and will continue to work hard to set up the new alternative governance system to make the dream of peace and progress based on truth, reconciliation and justice come true so soon. IRSMP congratulates and thanks you for your historic and meaningful achievement and wish you God’s blessings and godspeed as you – and we with you – struggle on.
We urge especially our fellow religious and lay leaders to likewise throw their support behind the Agreement, including our associates and collaborators in the big family of civil society in Mindanao. The peace talks have been an important, integral part of our social agenda for the past many years, and before us now stands the most crucial moments in our joint concern and unrelenting effort. Peace is in our hands, as we often say.
We urge, too, the few but significant factions and disgruntled parties, and traditional or professional critics, to lay aside their fears and prejudices and – as we too love to say – give this peace a chance. No political agreement is perfect on paper, until we make it perfect and most of all fair and fulfilling to all by dint of our deed.
We urge also all peace-loving citizens and all other stakeholders , including Muslims, Christians and indigenous communities – to persevere in actively working for peace. Love peace, talk peace, do peace, pray peace. Goodwill and platitudes are not enough. Peace is the highest prize, and because it is so it is also the toughest of tasks. But with all of us working together, with the Framework Agreement showing the high way, the golden prize will soon be ours as a gift of God and reward for our tears.
Done in Zamboanga City, October 14, 2012.

PROF. ALI T. YACUB REV. PAULINO ERSANDO
Muslim Convenor Evangelicals Convenor

REV. FR. ANGEL CALVO, CMF
R. Catholic Convenor

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