OIC urges Philippines, Muslim rebels to talk peace

An influential bloc of Muslim nations Thursday called on the Philippine government and Muslim rebels to end clashes it said put half a million civilians at risk and aided extremists who seek to destroy the fragile peace process. OIC Secretary-General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu appealed to President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front to resume peace talks and end the clashes that erupted in August after the Philippine Supreme Court scrapped a preliminary peace deal. In a statement on the bloc's Web site, he said the situation "empowers undisciplined elements who seek to abort the peace process and fuel extremist feelings."