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Nigerian Militants Accuse Military of Threatening Cease-Fire

Nigerian Militants Accuse Military of Threatening Cease-Fire
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Militants in Nigeria's oil-rich Niger Delta say a military raid on the home of a former rebel leader has put a cease-fire at risk.

Tuesday's statement from the Movement for the Emancipation of the Niger Delta (MEND) comes just three days after the group began peace talks with the government.

MEND says the Nigerian military, while searching for weapons, destroyed the home of a former militant commander, Christian don Pedro, in the Akuku Toru Area of Rivers State.

The group says the search turned up no weapons and called the action a "breach of the trust" between the government and rebels who recently accepted an amnesty deal in return for laying down their weapons.

The group warns it will take what it calls "appropriate retaliatory actions" for any future attack.

Nigeria's main militant group began formal peace talks with President Umaru Yar' Adua on Saturday.

Nigerian officials say they plan to offer inhabitants of the Niger Delta ten percent of all revenue from oil and gas ventures, in an effort to end the rebellion that has cost the country billions of dollars.

Last month, MEND reinstated a ceasefire that had expired in order to encourage dialogue with the government.

MEND's violent campaign against the oil industry began in early 2006. Attacks by MEND and other militants caused Nigeria's oil production to fall by as much as 33 percent

The rebel group says it is fighting so people living in the Niger Delta region get a greater share of the region's oil wealth.

Some information for this report was provided by Reuters.