Cautious optimism ahead of Filipino peace talks

February 15, 2011 08:55

OSLO, Norway — The Philippine government and communist rebels are upbeat but cautious as they reopen peace talks Tuesday aimed at ending a four-decade-long insurgency that has killed at least 120,000 combatants and civilians.

A truce has been declared during the weeklong talks outside Oslo, the first formal peace negotiations between the two sides since 2004.

It's the first time since the on-and-off talks opened 25 years ago that the rebels have agreed to a cease-fire while negotiations are being held.

"We are looking forward to the negotiations and expect positive results," rebel negotiator Luis Jalandoni told The Associated Press after arriving in the snow-clad Norwegian capital on Monday.

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