Philippine rebels: Peace pact 'best antidote' for extremism

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, center, holds the draft of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) together with, from left, Secretary Jesus Dureza, gove

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, center, Al-Hajj Murad, left, chair of Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF), Ghazali Jaafar, MILF vice-chair, and

Mohagher Iqbal, left, chair of the Moro Islamic Liberation Front's peace panel, and his counterpart from the Government Irene Santiago, hold documents

The hands of Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) leaders as well as that of Government Peace Panel chief negoti

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte flash a v-sign for peace during a ceremony for the submission of the draft of the Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) at M

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, left, receives the draft of the Bangsamoro Basic Law from Ghazali Jaafar, vice-chair of the Moro Islamic Liberat

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte, center, holds the draft of the proposed Bangsamoro Basic Law (BBL) as he poses with Senate President Aquilino Pi

MANILA, Philippines (AP) — A leader of the Philippines' largest Muslim rebel group says a peace accord it's trying to implement with the government is "the best antidote" for violent extremism exemplified by a bloody siege of southern Marawi city by Islamic State group-aligned militants.

Government and rebel representatives submitted draft legislation to President Rodrigo Duterte on Monday aimed at establishing a more powerful and better-funded Muslim autonomous region in the country's south under a 2014 peace deal signed by the two sides.

Moro Islamic Liberation Front Vice Chairman Ghazali Jaafar said the proposed law "is the best antidote to violent extremism that has wrought havoc" in many Muslim areas.

Officials say more than 550 people, including 411 militants, have been killed in nearly two months of fighting in Marawi.