Malacañang on Monday shields leaders of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front, (MILF) explaining the questionable citizenship of  Chairman Al Haji Murad Ebrahim and Bangsamoro peace panel chairman Mohagher Iqbal.

Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. explained that these accusations were “baseless” , the issue on Murad and Iqbal’s citizenship should not be a major deal because the two personalities have been widely recognized even past administrations that discussed also peace with the group.

“For the past 17 years, or dating back to the Ramos administration, Chairman Murad and Iqbal have engaged the Philippine government in peace negotiations. Throughout this period, their citizenship has never been questioned. In fact, both houses of Congress have recognized their legitimate roles in the peace process by inviting them to appear in congressional hearings.” Coloma said.

Prior to this, former DILG Secretary Rafael Alunan revealed that Murad and Iqbal are carrying Malaysian passports and both are citizens of Malaysia.