Turkey marks 2nd anniversary of Philippines' Bangsamoro

By Sena Guler

ANKARA (AA) – Turkey has congratulated Bangsamoro, an autonomous region in southern Philippines, on the second anniversary of its establishment.

“We extend our heartfelt congratulations to the friendly people and the Government of Philippines as well as the BARMM Administration on the second anniversary of the establishment of the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao, which is celebrated today,” the Turkish Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.

Highlighting Turkey’s support to the peace process in southern Philippines since its beginning, the ministry said the country will continue to contribute to “the strengthening of peace and stability in the region as well as its development.”

The region began its week-long anniversary celebrations on Monday, raising its flag at the government headquarters. Ceremonies are planned to be held across the Muslim-majority region, which has a nearly five million population, at schools as well as local government units.

The BARMM was created after the signing of the Bangsamoro Organic Law in 2018.

In early 2019, it was ratified through a plebiscite as a result of two-decades-long peace negotiations between the Moro Islamic Liberation Front and the Philippines government.

Last year, the region passed the Bangsamoro Administrative Code, which marks Jan. 21 as the Bangsamoro Foundation Day, and declared it a non-working holiday.​​​​​​