Philippines: Real Estate Rules

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June 18, 2006: There have been more clashes in the south, between MILF gunmen and soldiers. The optimism that negotiations with the MILF will be completed by September, may be premature. There have been rising expectations among the MILF rank-and-file that the deal would mean free land for them. This is based on the idea that, over the last century, "Christians have stolen Moslem land." as Christian influence, and settlers, increased in the Moslem south. But the Christians in the south point out that their ancestors moved in and occupied land that was not used by anyone, or bought it from Moslems. There has been a huge increase in population over the last century, but the amount of land has remained the same. The government will not allow a wholesale seizure of Christian's land, and transfer to Moslems, but that's what many MILF members are expecting. As a result, there is an increase in tension between MILF units and local Christians in the south. Some of this is attributed to the breakdown in discipline with the MILF, something that has been a problem for a long time.

June 17, 2006: Soldiers clashed with the NPA outside the capital, leaving two rebels and one soldier dead.

June 14, 2006: In the central Philippines, the NPA and Greenpeace have united to try and shut down an Australian mining operation. These two radical groups are opposed by the government and most of the local population, who want the jobs and economic growth.

June 13, 2006: There was an explosion outside a police station near the capital. There were no injuries. Someone is trying to send a message.

 

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