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Ugandan Peace Talks to Continue Despite Government Killing of Rebel Commander


Ugandan officials say peace talks with the rebel Lord's Resistance Army should continue, despite the recent killing of a top rebel commander.

In an interview with VOA (English to Africa), Information Minister Kirunda Kivajinja said the government wants lasting peace.

The Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) has said it will continue peace talks with the government, despite the killing of its third-in-command, Raska Lukwiya.

Ugandan officials said the rebel commander was killed last week in a firefight with government troops in the country's Kitgum district.

Lukwiya was one of five rebel leaders charged with war crimes and crimes against humanity by the International Criminal Court (ICC). The ICC said Monday it is seeking confirmation of his death.

The court says Lukwiya was the LRA's army commander in early 2004, when the rebels carried out what the ICC calls their most deadly attacks on civilians in northern Uganda.

The rebel delegation stormed out of the peace talks last Wednesday after the Ugandan government refused to join rebels in declaring a ceasefire. The government says any truce would have to be a part of a final peace agreement.

The talks in southern Sudan are aimed at ending the rebels' 20-year insurgency. The fighting has killed thousands of Ugandan civilians and displaced more than two million from their homes.