Gov't urges CPP/NPA/NDF to extend ceasefire

The government is urging the Communist Party of the Philippines (CPP) to indefinitely extend a humanitarian ceasefire nationwide amid efforts to rehabilitate communities ravaged by Super Typhoon Yolanda.

In a statement released on Friday, the government's Peace Panel (GPH) in talks with the CPP/New People's Army (NPA)/National Democratic Front(NDF) said the country needs national unity in order to recover from this "massive" disaster.

"We call on all Filipinos to set aside the politics and ideologies that have divided us, and with arms linked kapit-bisig, together surmount this crisis," GPH said.

The GPH is also urging CPP/NPA/NDF to participate in the national effort to rebuild from the destruction Yolanda caused as the government's own armed forces and police "have changed their mode of operations from armed resistance to unarmed resistance, rescue, relief and rehabilitation in Yolanda-affected areas."

The CPP-NPA earlier declared a ten-day ceasefire in typhoon-affected areas.

On Wednesday, people in Tacloban panicked amid reports of armed looting in the Yolanda-hit city. Soldiers rushed to Barangay Abucay where the armed men were said to be located, but this report turned out to be false.

Yolanda last week ripped through the Visayas region, leaving at least 3,621 people confirmed dead as of Friday, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

It is considered the strongest recorded cyclone in the world in 2013.

READ MORE: Beyond canned goods: More ways to help 'Yolanda' victims

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