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  1. Japan heartily welcomes the enactment of the Organic Law for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao regarding the Mindanao peace process in the Republic of the Philippines through the signature of H.E. Mr. Rodrigo Roa Duterte, President of the Republic of the Philippines, on July 26, 2018.
  2. The enactment of this law is an important step toward the establishment of the new autonomous government (Bangsamoro) in Mindanao. Japan sincerely commends the efforts of the Government of the Philippines, the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), and all others concerned.
  3. Japan strongly hopes that the transition process toward the inauguration of Bangsamoro will besteadily implemented, including ratification of the organic law and establishment of theBangsamoro Transition Authority (BTA).
  4. Japan has been supporting the peace process for many years under the conviction that peace in Mindanao will contribute to regional peace and stability. As declared in the Japan-Philippines Joint Statement on Bilateral Cooperation for the Next Five Years announced in October 2017, Japan will enhance its support for the development of Mindanao in a wide range of fields, in accordance with progress in the peace process.

[Reference]

The Mindanao Peace Process

  1. Through peace negotiations between the Government of the Philippines and the MILF, the Framework Agreement was signed in October 2012, and the Comprehensive Agreement was signed in March 2014.
  2. Based on the final peace agreement, the new autonomous government (Bangsamoro) willbe established through the following transition process: (i) the enactment of the organic law;(ii) the ratification of the organic law; (iii) the establishment of the BTA; and (iv) the election ofthe Bangsamoro Assembly.
  3. The Government of Japan has been contributing to the advancement of the peace process and to the reconstruction and development of the Mindanao region through efforts that include: (i) the dispatch of development experts to the Social and Economic Development Section of the International Monitoring Team; (ii) the concentrated implementation of economic cooperation projects such as extending Grassroots Grant Assistance for Human Security in former conflict-affected areas (Japan-Bangsamoro Initiatives for Reconstruction and Development (J-BIRD)); and (iii) participation in the International Contact Group (ICG)that provides advice by attending peace talks as an observer.
  4. In addition, the Government of Japan expressed that, from a mid-to-long term perspective, it will match its support with the progress made in the process for the establishment of a new autonomous government in Bangsamoro by enhancing its assistance for development in Mindanao, which Japan has been implementing under J-BIRD in a wide range of areas, in

PARIS — Simona Halep insists she feels “no pressure, no expectation” as she looks to reach a fourth Grand Slam final at the French Open on Thursday.

The 26-year-old Romanian tackles 2016 Roland Garros winner and reigning Wimbledon champion Garbine Muguruza for a place in Saturday’s final.

by Marlon Bernardino
LAKE SEBU, South Cotabato---Roumundo Jaime Alexis Edades Jr. topped the South Cotabato Open Chess Championship on Sunday, May 27, 2018 at Punta Isla Resort, Lake Sebu in South Cotabato here.

For the second straight game, Kevin Durant was clearly the best basketball player on the floor for the Warriors or Rockets. Durant has been completely unstoppable scoring the ball: in two games, he has 75 points in 56 shooting possessions. Given his threes and free throws, it’s the equivalent of shooting 67 percent on two-pointers at high volume. That’s come against one of the league’s best defenses on the road. It’s unreal.

by Marlon Bernardino
Fide Master (FM) John Marvin Miciano of Davao City had to setlle for his third consecutive draw against countryman Daniel Quizon of Damarinas City, Cavite in the penultimate 8th round at the Under-18 division of the Asian Youth Chess Tournament Standard event at the Lotus Pang Suan Kaew Hotel in Chiang Mai, Thailand on Saturday.

by Marlon Bernardino
GRANDMASTER (GM) Rogelio "Joey" Antonio Jr.pocketed the top honors in the Philippine Sports Commission (PSC) Chess Tournament 2018 held at the

Dasma 2 Central Elementary School near in SM Hyper Market Kadiwa in Dasmariñas City, Cavite over the weekend.

College basketball is broken, a fact that even the NCAA now accepts. The model of amateurism the sport sells has been compromised for years, tainted by the black market the NCAA helped create and the billion dollar business basketball has become.

Recruits are commodities to agents, shoe companies and programs, but it is against the NCAA rules to pay them. There needs to be a better option for the players, but as long as the one-and-done rule exists, the NBA isn’t one of them. Perhaps the G-League can be.

A new era of Bellator will debut on Jan. 20 when the promotion holds its first show on the Paramount Network, the newly re-branded channel that formerly went by Spike TV. But MMA fans will notice another big change as well. Bellator 192 will mark the promotion’s first event without its longtime color commentator Jimmy Smith, who parted ways with the company in a surprise announcement at the end of 2017.

UFC women’s featherweight champion Cris Cyborg led the disclosed payroll at UFC 219, earning $500,000 for her successful title defense against Holly Holm.

The Nevada Athletic Commission released the event’s finalized salary information in the aftermath of UFC 219.

Barangay Ginebra hung tough in the face of Meralco's late rally to run away with a 101-96 in Game 7 last night and successfully defend the PBA Governor's Cup title against the same contender on Friday night at the Philippine Arena in Bocaue, Bulacan last night.

What made the win sweeter was that it was fashioned out before an all-time record crowd of 54,086 fans.

Tony Ferguson was very direct in his call-out of Conor McGregor today.

Now that Tony Ferguson has the UFC interim lightweight title around his waist, he has his eyes on one person - Conor McGregor. Ferguson defeated Kevin Lee at UFC 216 via third-round submission, and is intent on unifying the titles. As a guest on The MMA Hour today, he spelled out exactly why he thinks he should get the fight and had some things to say directly to McGregor (via MMA Fighting):

“I mean, if Dana says it, then we’re going to hold it to him. The UFC is pretty good with that, right? They don’t want to be called liars, and I don’t want to make them a liar, so this sh-t needs to happen.”

A grandson of Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan is suffering from severe depression now after news of the murder of Horatio Castillo, a UST law student who died from the Aegis Juris’ hazing.

Robert Louis Pangilinan filed charges of attempted murder against 16 Tau Gamma Phi fraternity members, all currently enrolled as students of Adamson University, where Pangilinan is a third year Hospitality Management student and a member of the basketball team.

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