Sudan's president offers cease-fire when talks start

September 14, 2007 23:18

In a rare, high-profile visit to the West, Sudan's president on Friday met with the pope and Italy's premier, and offered to declare a cease-fire with Darfur rebels to coincide with the start of UN-backed peace talks next month. Past truces have been regularly violated. Al-Bashir told reporters after meeting Italian Premier Romano Prodi that he was offering a cease-fire linked to the start of negotiations on Oct. 27, in Tripoli, Libya, to "create a positive climate." "We hope that the negotiations in Tripoli will be the last ones and that they will bring definitive peace," al-Bashir said.

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