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Former Aceh Rebels Begin Second Round of Weapons Disarmament


Former rebels in Indonesia's Aceh province are beginning a second round of weapons surrender Friday as part of a peace accord designed to end 29 years of separatist violence.

Members of the Free Aceh Movement are expected to hand over 210 more weapons in the next few days to international monitors in northern Aceh. In return, the Indonesian government is scheduled to withdraw 6,500 more soldiers from the province.

Under the peace accord, the Free Aceh Movement must decommission all its weapons in exchange for the withdrawal of 32,000 police and troops by the end of the year. Implementation began in September.

Many Acehnese want a separate Islamic state and resent that profits from their rich natural resources have been directed elsewhere by the central government in Jakarta.

Some information in this story provided by AP.

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