Ramos Horta willing to heip peace effort in southern philippines

www.manila-shimbun.com, 16 January 2009


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Ramos Horta willing to help peace effort in southern Philippines

MANILA -- Timor-Leste President Jose Ramos Horta expressed willingness to help in attaining peace in war-torn southern Philippines if his help is sought.

メIユll be willing to help in mediating in the resumption of peace talks between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF)ノ but only if both parties will agree and invite me,モ Horta told the audience in the open forum at De La Salle University where he spoke on Thursday.

Ramos Horta, the 1996 Nobel Peace Prize winner, is on a one week visit to the Philippines.

But he said that what is most important is the commitment of people involved in the process to achieve peace and not the arbitration of Timor-Leste, Malaysia, Indonesia or even the United Nations.

メNo one can find peace for Filipinos but Filipinos themselves. No one else can help you but you Filipinos, yourselves,モ Ramos Horta stressed.

He arrived in the country last Tuesday for the 2009 Association of South East Asian Nations (Asean) Bridges Dialogue series. He went to Davao City earlier in the week to observe the effects of the decades-old conflict in Mindanao.DMS