MANILA (AFP) – The Philippines' chief peace negotiator with communist insurgents said Tuesday he was resigning, citing his frustration over the continuing stalled talks.
Alexander Padilla, head of the government panel negotiating with the National Democratic Front said he had tendered his resignation, adding that perhaps someone else could revive the peace process.
"The talks have been at an impasse for some time now and maybe it needs a new face, a new plan," he told AFP.
His decision comes as rebels have stepped up attacks in the countryside.
Asked if the insurgents wanted him out, Padilla said: "I don't know if it is a two-way street but definitely... we have not been moving."
In April, Padilla said that the talks with the communists had failed and that the hopes of achieving peace before President Benigno Aquino steps down in 2016 were gone.
The Maoist rebels have been waging an armed rebellion to seize power since 1969 and more than 30,000 people have died in the conflict, according to the government.
The military estimates the current guerilla strength at about 4,000 fighters, significantly down from more than 26,000 at its peak in the late 1980s.
The government has been holding on-and-off again peace talks with the insurgents since the mid-1980s but the negotiations have frequently stalled over rebel conditions like their demand that jailed comrades be freed.
Padilla, a former human rights activist, had previously expressed frustration over the talks with the communist rebels.
In recent weeks, the insurgents' guerrilla arm, the New People's Army, have also stepped up large-scale attacks.
In the past two weeks, two soldiers and five tree plantation workers were killed by communist rebels in a town in the southern island of Mindanao while another NPA unit kidnapped five unarmed soldiers elsewhere on the island.
Eight police commandos died last month when communist rebels ambushed them on Luzon, the country's biggest island and home to the nation's capital Manila.