Everyday History
Aguinaldo's demands for surrender
Daily History Emilio Aguinaldo Pact of Biak na Bato Philippine Revolution

Aguinaldo lists surrender demands: August 13, 1897

On this day in 1897, Filipino lawyer Pedro Paterno presented himself to Governor General Fernando Primo de Rivera in Malacañang to relay to him Gen. Emilio Aguinaldo’s surrender demands, which the general outlined during their meeting at Biak-na-Bato in San Miguel, Bulacan on August 9.

Aguinaldo listed the following surrender demands:

  • Payment of a P3-million indemnity
  • Equal application of justice between Spanish and Filipino people
  • Expulsion of the friars
  • Filipino representation in the Cortes
  • Appointment of Filipinos in high positions in government
  • Changes in policies regarding taxation and the ownership of parish property to favor Filipinos
  • Freedom of the press
  • Liberty of association for Filipinos

Primo de Rivera refused Aguinaldo’s surrender demands but relented later on after the Spanish government in Madrid agreed to pay an indemnity in an attempt to end the revolution.

On Dec. 14, 1897, Spain and Aguinaldo’s revolutionary government signed a truce which became known as the Pact of Biak-na-Bato. The pact states that Aguinaldo, along with several of his Cabinet members and staff, would voluntarily go to exile in Hong Kong in exchange for the payment of an indemnity and the granting of an amnesty to all revolutionary forces fighting Spain.

On Dec. 24, 1897, Aguinaldo and his entourage left for Hong Kong to begin their exile, while hostilities between Spain and the revolutionaries halted. The end to hostilities only lasted for a few months as some Katipuneros who were not compensated by Spain resumed their armed rebellion.


Kalendaryong Pangkasaysayan (1521-1969). National Historical Commission of the Philippines. Manila, Philippines. 1996.

Aguinaldo, Emilio. The True Version of the Philippine Revolution. Tarlac, Philippine Islands. 1899. pp. 4-6

Tucker, Spencer. “Pact of Biak na Bato.The Encyclopedia of the Spanish-American and Philippine-American Wars: A Political, Social, and Military History, Volume 1. ABC-CLIO. 2009. pp. 58-59

The Truce of Biak-na-Bato. Philippine Center for Masonic Studies.

Trivia question:

In the final pact of Biak-na-Bato, how much did Aguinaldo and his men receive for agreeing to go to exile in Hong Kong and halt the revolution?

Yesterday’s answer: Manila-Hong Kong Telegraph Line

Related story: January 5, 1899: Aguinaldo responds to Benevolent Assimilation Proclamation

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