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Bangsamoro Normalization and Women’s Voices: A Public Forum

Everyone is invited to a hybrid public forum, “Bangsamoro Normalization and Women’s Voices,” on 26 February 2024, 3 pm to 5 pm, Philippine Standard Time, at UP CIDS, Ang Bahay ng Alumni, UP Diliman. The event will be available via Zoom. The forum is free and open to the public, but interested participants are asked to pre-register. Zoom details will be sent in due course.



The forum will feature three presentations. Click on the titles to read the abstracts.

The Impact of Decommissioning on the Bangsamoro Islamic Women Auxiliary Brigade (BIWAB)

Julia Palik is a Senior Researcher at the Peace Research Insitute Oslo (PRIO). Currently, she is leading a Norwegian Research Council-funded project on disarmament, demobilization, and reintegration (DDR) programs.

Women and Military Heroism during the 2017 Marawi War 

Rosalie Arcala Hall, PhD is Full Professor of Political Science and UP Scientist III at the University of the Philippines Visayas (UPV) Miagao, Iloilo. She completed her Masters degree in political science (1998) and PhD in international and Public Affairs (2002) at Northeastern University, Boston, Massachusetts, USA on a Fulbright-Hayes scholarship. She is the current Executive Director of UP CIDS.

The Normalisation Process in the Bangsamoro: From Peace Agreement to Peace Implementation

Georgji Engelbrecht is Senior Analyst at International Crisis Group, “an independent, non-profit, non-governmental organisation committed to preventing and resolving deadly conflict.”


Dir. Ishmael Bahjin is the Head of the Peace Panel and Political Concerns Office of the Office of the Presidential Adviser on Peace, Reconciliation and Unity (OPAPRU). As such, he leads the Secretariat of the Intergovernmental Relations Body (IGRB) of the National Government with the BARMM government. He also concurrently serves as the Head of Secretariat for the GPH Task Force for Decommissioned Combatants. Previously, he was the Head of Secretariat of the Government Peace Implementing Panel for the GPH-MILF Peace Accord and the Head of the Security Unit and Secretariat of the Joint Peace and Security Committee with the MILF. Dir. Bahjin graduated from the UP College of Law and was admitted to the Bar in 2018.

About the Forum

This forum investigates various facets of this normalization process under The Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro (CAB) between the Government of the Philippines and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF). It has been internationally hailed as an agreement that pays much-needed attention to women’s issues. Considerations regarding women’s roles and needs feature prominently in the agreement, including the Annex on Normalization, which stipulates the decommissioning of 40,000 MILF combatants and their firearms. The agreement also provides for special socio-economic programs for the decommissioned women auxiliary forces of the MILF.

Inquiries and About UP CIDS

For queries, please email [email protected]h.

The forum is organized by the UP Center for Integrative and Development Studies (UP CIDS), the UP CIDS Islamic Studies Program, and the Institute of Islamic Studies, University of the Philippines Diliman. UP CIDS is a policy research unit of the University that is mandated to encourage collaborative and rigorous research addressing issues of national significance. It currently houses 16 Research Programs and will soon feature three more. Visit the UP CIDS database and download over 900+ policy papers for FREE.