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IMT launches CPC to advance international humanitarian law

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The International Monitoring Team-Batch 5 (IMT 5) launched early this week its Civilian Protection Component (CPC) as a mechanism to ensure the observance of the international humanitarian law (IHL) and other human rights laws in areas of conflict.

In a press statement, the Bureau of Public Information of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BPI-ARMM) said that IMT 5 is a multinational contingent providing diverse support in the peace negotiation between the Philippine government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF).

Maj. Gen. Datuk Baharom Bin Hamzah, IMT 5 Head of Mission, describes the CPC as a mechanism that relies on a strong partnership between the government and the people to improve peace and security in communities.

Hamzah said the CPC would monitor the commitment of both the Philippine government and the MILF to the IHL and other human rights laws and report their adherence and/or violation of such.

The IMT 5 and its partners have put up 10 field offices with over a hundred personnel to begin this work.

CPC is currently composed of the Nonviolent Peaceforce (NP), Mindanao People’s Caucus (MPC), Mindanao Human Rights Action Center, Inc. (MinHRAC) and the Moslem Organization of Government Officials and Professionals, Inc. (MOGOP).

The IMT 5 and its CPC will also play a part in ensuring a peaceful and transparent Barangay election this October 25.

Hamzah urged all candidates and other involved parties to “adhere to the laws and regulations that have been put forth by the Commission on Elections (Comelec).”

“Rest assured, the IMT and the CPC along with our partners will be active during the period in assisting the agencies concerned in monitoring peace and security and in protecting civilian safety,” he said.

Further, he said the organization of the CPC is a manifestation of “Malaysia’s desire to see a more peaceful and secure Mindanao” and its commitment to espouse “a sustainable and lasting peace agreement.” 

Among the IMT’s foremost task is to monitor the ceasefire agreement between the government and the MILF. Hamzah said he is pleased that there has been no ceasefire violation since his arrival in the country to head the IMT 5. (BPI/PIA9-BST)




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