STATEMENT of Unity and Solidary of Youth in Mindanao

Mindanao Youth Peace Conference
Friday, 28 November 2008 21:35
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Statement of Unity and Solidarity of Youth in Mindanao

Davao City, Philippines

November 25, 2008
We, the tri-people youth leaders coming from the different communities of faith and ethnic traditions all over Mindanao, conferred to a 3-day MINDANAO YOUTH PEACE CONFERENCE with its theme “The Muslim, Christian, and Indigenous Peoples youth leaders: looking back, looking inwards and looking ahead”. This conference has presented commonly shared and relevant issues and concerns directly affecting our situation as the youth of Mindanao today. During our sharing, we have been clarified with the social realities; faced with countless challenges and moved toward personal conviction in making a difference through dialogue and peaceful means. Despite the negative reports of the past and present issues between and among our own cities and provinces, we remain firm with our stand that we could come together and remain steadfast blest with our rich cultural and faith traditions though diverse they may be. We realize that a peaceful Mindanao means the absence of social inequality, injustices, and environmental problems. More significantly, the vulnerable sectors, especially the youth, women, and children must also be heard, respected, and enjoined in all forms of peace undertakings. With all these concerns, we unceasingly hope that lasting peace and sustainable development are at hand.

To this, we strongly manifest our personal commitment to take active stand and continue working for peace in whatever forms on the following concerns:

· that Mindanao peace process must be pursued which indicates that all parties involved have to sincerely go back to the negotiating table and adhere (to) the consensus points being agreed by both parties concerned.

· that they all must indemnify the values of high respect to the various cultures and faith, practice forgiveness, and just and lasting peace in Mindanao, and in the country in general.

· that hostilities in Mindanao must be stopped immediately and appropriate interventions and assistance be given to the IDPs.

· that we are one in reiterating our support for the aspirations and the rights to Self-Determination of the Indigenous Peoples, Bangsamoro, as well as the high respect on the rights of the Settlers.

· that every Mindanawon must be given free access to quality education, noble jobs, and decent living.

· that media organizations shall join us keenly and professionally in promoting peace by way of delivering balanced and just news.

· that all private and government sectors must give full support to all forms of inter-religious and inter-cultural dialogues and initiatives.

· that Mindanawons see the significance of our partnerships and genuine friendship and that through these, the decades of suffering shall be put to an end.
It is in this present context, therefore, as a manifestation and in the quest of peace and development in Mindanao that we hereby denote and reiterate our dedication and persistently enrich the gains of the dialogue towards a lasting and peaceful Mindanao.

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