Nepal's Maoist rebels say they are withdrawing from an eight-month truce and walking out of peace talks with the government.

A statement quoting Maoist rebel leader, Pushpa Kamal Dahal, who is known as Prachanda, says the group is breaking the ceasefire agreed upon with Nepal's government in January.

The statement Wednesday says there is no reason for the truce or for continuing peace talks at this time.

The rebels say they are not closing the door on negotiations, but are hoping for what they term a "more favorable atmosphere" for future talks.

The government and rebels have held three rounds of peace talks since January. The last round ended in an impasse last week.

The rebels, who want a communist state, had given the government until Wednesday to agree to their demand that country's constitution be re-written.

The government has said it will not make concessions on the country's multi-party constitutional monarchy.

The rebels turned down a government proposal for an interim administration that would include rebel representatives.

More than 7,000 people have been killed since the Maoist insurgency began in 1996.

Last week, the United States urged Nepal's Maoist rebels not to pull out of the peace process and called for both sides to show good faith in working to end the seven-year conflict.