Marcos declares Palawan Island ‘insurgency-free’

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, September 1) — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. on Friday officially declared the island of Palawan as insurgency-free — a move he said would help boost investment in the world-renowned tourist destination.

Marcos made the declaration during a program in Puerto Princesa, as the country celebrates the first day of the National Peace Consciousness Month.

“I cannot think of a better way to open the celebration, the commemoration of the National Peace Consciousness Month than to also at the same time be able to declare Palawan Island as insurgency-free,” he said in a speech.

Speaking to reporters after the event, the president said such a declaration would help the economy of the island by bringing in more tourists and investments.

“Because unless you have a peaceful community, unless you have security in the area, ang hirap talaga maka-attract ng [it’s very hard to attract] investment. And so now that we are able to wave that flag, sabihin natin [we’ll say], ‘No, Palawan is free,’ then Palawan is already a very large part of all our plans for transformation of the economy,” Marcos said.

In 2022, the Palawan Provincial Task Force to End Local Communist Armed Conflict (PTF-ELCAC) and the Provincial Peace and Order Committee (PPOC) first issued a joint resolution declaring Palawan Island as insurgency-free.

According to the Presidential Communications Office, the PTF-ELCAC and PPOC said communist rebels in the area “have been decimated and strategically defeated with the neutralization of [their] leaders and members which led to the dismantling of guerrilla formations.”