Armed Forces of the Philippines chief of staff Gen. Romeo Brawner Jr. on Thursday called for “meaningful conversations” to end conflict and foster understanding during the unveiling of the Symbol of Peace monument at the headquarters of 6th Infantry Division in Maguindanao del Norte.
The monument is an 18-foot replica of an M-16 rifle crafted from dismantled firearms that were confiscated, captured, recovered or surrendered to the military in the Bangsamoro region.
“May it inspire us all to engage in meaningful conversations to dismantle the walls that divide us and to build bridges of understanding and reconciliation. Let us draw strength from the enduring spirit displayed by the men and women who have helped shape our nation’s history,” Brawner said.
The military chief attributed the successful peace and development efforts in the Bangsamoro region to the whole-of-nation approach and the support of communities, adding that a purely military solution will only be temporary.
“When all government agencies, the local government, the private sector, and more importantly the peace-inclined groups work together, we can speed up peace and progress,” he said.
“Let us stand united in our commitment to uphold the values of peace, unity, and progress. May this symbol of transformation and peace serve as a constant reminder of our responsibility to protect our nation and the very fabric of harmony upon which it is built,” Brawner added.