NPA memebers. (Source: AFP/VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) - The Philippine Government has announced a 12-day truce with the New People’s Army (NPA) to ensure peaceful Christmas and New Year holidays for the local people, a government official said on December 18.

According to Presidential Communications Office Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr., President Benigno S. Aquino III has approved the Department of National Defence Secretary Voltaire Gazmin’s proposal for suspending military operations from December 23, 2015 to January 3, 2016.

On December 15, NPA proclaimed to implement a unilateral ceasefire during 12 days and asked rebellions to halt attacks on military and businesses. It expected the Government to declare the same action, seeing this as a basis to resume negotiations.

NPA has carried out war against the Government over the past four decades.

Earlier, the Government agreed a ceasefire with the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) - the largest Islamic rebel in the south, ending the four-decade conflict which claimed 120,000 lives. However, it refused the truce with Abu Sayyaf which pledged loyalty to the Islamic State (IS).-VNA