Japan welcomes BTA establishment

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Japan has hailed the creation of the Bangsamoro Authority (BTA) headed by Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) Chairman Al Haj Murad Ebrahim.

“Japan heartily welcomes the establishment of the Bangsamoro Transition Authority today. This is an important milestone that marks a considerable progress in the Mindanao peace process,” said Foreign Minister Taro Kono in a statement Friday, February 22.

He said the 80-man BTA is critically important to ensure that the progress in the peace process leads to a visible improvement in the living condition of the people of Mindanao.

He reiterated Japan’s commitment as partner in the peace process.

“This is why Japan, as a partner that has been consistently supporting the peace process for more than ten years, intends to seize this opportunity to further enhance its support to Mindanao,” Kono said.

The BTA members, with Murad as the appointed chief minister, took their oath before President Rodrigo Duterte in Malacanang.