Section 2. News Report. Negotiations in the Philippines.
In the Philippines today, Cardinal Haimi Sung, the influential Archbishop of Manila, endorsed President Corazon Aquino's efforts to negotiate with Communist insurgence of the New People's army.
Leaders of the Philippines military, however, and members of her own cabinet have criticized Aquino's attempts at negotiation.
The NPA rebels had proposed a 100 day cease fire to begin in December.
A group of civilian negotiators and military advisers will meet tomorrow with rebel leaders to discuss the possible truce.
Garis Porter, an assistant professor at the American's University's School of International Service, says the rebel proposal is a response to President Aquino's earlier offer for a 30 day cease fire.
I think they are proposing a 100 day cease fire primarily because they want to regain the initiative, because they do have to have the appearance of being open to a cease fire. In fact, being at least as open to cease fire as the government is.
The real question, of course, is what terms the cease fire will be implemented on. And there is where you are going to find a lot of worms, which neither side I think is really quite clear on exactly what they're yet ready to settle for.
They suggested five talking points. And some of those talking points I would think could meet with some pretty stiff opposition from Philippine military.
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