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Madagascar Opposition Rejects Rajoelina's Unity Government

Madagascar's opposition movements are refusing to enter into a unity government that is set-up by interim leader Andry Rajoelina.

Senior officials representing former President Marc Ravalomanana said Saturday such a government would be unilateral and could not be accepted.

On Friday, Mr. Rajoelina ordered his prime minister (Monja Roindefo) to form what he called a consensus government within 72 hours, after talks to resolve the country's political crisis broke down.

Madagascar's four main political factions signed a deal last month to form a power-sharing government until elections can be held. But talks on who should take the top positions have been deadlocked.

The opposition factions had previously called on the military to lead a transitional administration, but military leaders rejected the request.

The country has endured months of political turmoil since protests swept President Marc Ravalomanana from power in March.

The African Union has refused to recognize Mr. Rajoelina as president.

Mr. Rajoelina has insisted on remaining president during any transition period -- a proposal rejected by Mr. Ravalomanana.

The United Nations has been helping to mediate the political talks in Mozambique's capital, Maputo.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and Reuters.