The Philippines: Mindanao Conflict
By Kristyna Otto
The Philippines, a self-proclaimed Catholic country, has faced religious conflict in Mindanao. Located in the Southern Philippines, Mindanao has a strong majority of Muslim citizens. A group known as the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, created in 1981, has a goal of creating a seperate Islamic state in Mindanao. Ever since, the government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front have attempted to work out a solution, but have come to no agreement. In 2008, the Filipino president had agreed to make their Muslim state, but it was deemed unconstitutional and failed. The Moro Islamic Liberation Front has continued to cause uprisings and fighting. Last year, approximately 124,000 people were displaced and even more were killed.
Currently: Clan Wars Caused by Rebels
This past month the fighting in Mindanao has increased heavily. More people have been forced to flee from their home in attempt to escape the violence. This region of the Philippines is considered one of the poorest parts of the country. The current president has attempted to increase the economy with the hopes that better jobs will end the violence caused by the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, but no solution has worked. In fact, it has been getting worse as clan wars have broken out as well. Families are turning against one another over this conflict. No other countries have became involved in this issue yet. The Moro Islamic Liberation Front is not willing to end the uprisings and violence until they are able to have their own state. Besides the president's attempts to increase the economy, there have been many more tries to end the violece peacefully. The country has invested one billion dollars to potentially buy a new island for the Moro Islamic Liberation Front. In the past, peace treaties have been signed, but nothing seems to last. These peacemaking efforts have not been efficient. My suggestion would be to make a compromise to give the Muslim people more of a voice in the government.
Aquino, Norman P. Clan wars see families murder each other in southern Philippines.
Chicago Tribune, 30 April 2015. Web. 1 May 2015.
Guide to the Philippines Conflict. BBC, 8 Oct 2012. Web.1 May 2015.