MILF infighting displaces families in Maguindanao coastal villages

December 8, 2015 7:44 am 

COTABATO CITY, Dec. 8 –- At least 90 Moro families have been displaced by an ongoing armed conflict involving members of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) in the coastal villages of Datu Blah Sinsuat town in Maguindanao, the town mayor said.

Datu Blah Mayor Marshal Sinsuat said involved in the fighting were leaders and members of two base commands of the MILF in the villages of Meti and Sinapak, both coastal barangays.

“Our municipal social welfare workers are now attending to the needs of the displaced families,” Sinsuat said, adding that affected residents are temporarily housed in the barangay hall of two affected villages.

He said the warring members of the MILF are disputing territorial issues in the two villages.

Without naming the leaders of two warring MILF factions, Sinsuat said both sides have agreed to a peaceful settlement of misunderstanding and ensure the safety of civilians.

“We already settled this problem in a peaceful dialogue last November, but sadly they are at it again,” Sinsuat said.

“It was a long standing ‘rido’ (family feud) involving leaders of two warring MILF groups,” he added.

“Our town DSWD office workers are now attending to the needs of affected families,” the mayor said.

He said his office has sought the intervention of the government and MILF ceasefire panels “so the civilians can return to their respective communities.”

He also appealed to warring MILF leaders, who happened to be related by blood, to disengage and allow peaceful solution of their misunderstanding.

“We asked both of you to disengage and settle your differences diplomatically,” Sinsuat told warring MILF fighters through Radio Station DXMS-AM.

“Have pity on the civilians who have been evicted from their communities where their livelihood is located,” he said. (PNA)

JMC/NYP/EOF

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