Philippine government announces peace deal
THE Philippine government and the country's biggest Muslim rebel group announced yesterday that they had agreed a plan to end a decades-long separatist insurgency that has killed more than 120,000 people.
The historic agreement comes after 15 years of tortuous talks between the 12,000-strong Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) and the government.
It calls for the creation of a new autonomous region in Mindanao, the Muslim-dominated south of the country, by 2016.
"This framework agreement paves the way for a final and enduring peace in Mindanao," said President Benigno Aquino.
Previous peace talks between rebels and government have broken down, but there is optimism that this deal, negotiated in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, will succeed. (© Daily Telegraph, London)