Ugandan government and rebels renew truce

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April 15, 2007 05:20

 
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Uganda's government and a rebel group responsible for one of Africa's longest and most brutal wars have signed a new truce and agreed to resume stalled peace talks later this month. The elusive leader of the rebel Lord's Resistance Army, Joseph Kony, witnessed the signing Saturday in Ri-Kwangba, Sudan, LRA spokesman Martin Ojul told The Associated Press. Kony has appeared in public only a handful of times, fearing arrest and extradition to the Hague to answer war crimes charges. During the LRA's two-decade insurgency, the group has been blamed for murder, mutilations and kidnapping children for use as soldiers and sex slaves. Two million people have been displaced by the conflict, aid organizations say. Both sides signed a truce in August and began peace talks, but the deal has been undermined with the two trading accusations of hostility. Under the new truce, rebel fighters have until the end of June to gather in Ri-Kwangba, where they will be protected and monitored while a broader peace deal is negotiated. Renewed talks will begin April 26.

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