Army, Muslim community cooperate for peace, security

Philippine Army’s 3rd Infantry Division Commander, Maj. Gen. Jon Aying, recently met the Muslim leaders in the province to tackle important issues on the prevention of any criminality, illegal drugs, and terrorism.

Army Commander MGen. Jon Aying of 3ID (center, seated) with Tate Sultan (seated to his left) and Imam Uztad Maula (seated to his right) and other Muslim leaders in the province in a meeting held recently in Dumaguete City. (PIA7-NegOr)

In their meeting, Muslim leader Sultan Tate raised some concerns that call for the army official’s facilitation to address the issues.

MGen. Aying disclosed some issues raised by Tate which both agreed to iron out.

Issues cited include the security of Muslim leaders subjected to harassment by terrorist leaders from Mindanao.

While Mindanao is still under Martial Law, the movement of goods of some Muslim businessmen hampers the delivery of products from Mindanao to Negros Oriental or vice-versa.

Moreover, MGen. Aying said that Tate also asked to reduce incidents of possible harassment of Muslim brothers at checkpoints and on-the-spot inspections in their residences.

With this, MGen. Aying said measures will be done to immediately address the issues.

“Our immediate action here is to come up with an initial meeting with the core group between the PNP and the military and after that we can go to the next step which is to expand the meeting with the stakeholders including the local government and NGOs and Muslim communities,” said Aying.

After the initial meeting, Aying said they will create a Technical Working Group to come up with specific programs and projects so that these three agenda will be addressed with focus programs that can be implemented effectively and sustainably.

“This is to improve the relationship between the local government with Muslim communities and with law enforcers that include the PNP and the military,” he added. (jct/PIA7-Negros Oriental)

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