Australia reaffirms support for Philippines peace process

Today I met with the Philippines Presidential Advisor on the Peace Process between the Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) to reaffirm Australia’s support for the peace process.

In my meeting with Secretary Teresita Quintos Deles, I confirmed Australia’s commitment to promoting development and prosperity in conflict affected regions of Mindanao in the Southern Philippines.

The Peace Agreement, signed in March 2014, aims to end more than four decades of conflict over the desire of the Moro people for greater autonomy.

In partnership with the United Nations Development Programme and the Philippine Business for Social Progress Organisation, the Australian Government will provide $4 million over the next three years to support the joint security and justice mechanisms of the peace process.

This includes support for cease-fire monitoring to ensure the continuation of peace and stability.

Australia’s contribution will also enable responsible business investment in the proposed Bangsamoro Autonomous area and will support economic development.

Australia’s strong and enduring support for the peace process has included technical expertise to the Office of the Presidential Advisor on the Peace Process during the negotiation period.

Australian support and expertise through NGOs including the Asia Foundation and International Alert, has also increased the capacity of Philippines Government and the MILF to implement the peace process.