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Last Updated: Sunday, 14 November, 2004, 19:31 GMT
Uganda declares limited ceasefire
President Yoweri Museveni
Museveni is responding to the rebels' offer
Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni has declared a week-long truce with the rebels of the Lord's Resistance Army.

The move is designed to allow the insurgents to confirm that they are ready for peace talks, a presidential spokesman said on Sunday.

Earlier this month a rebel commander called for negotiations aimed at ending the country's 18-year civil war.

The seven-day unilateral truce will begin on Monday, and cover a limited area in the north of the country.

The conflict has seen more than 20,000 children abducted by the rebels. About 1.5 million people have been displaced.

The BBC's Will Ross in Kampala says Mr Museveni's response to the rebels' overture gives the peace process a chance.

The Lord's Resistance Army has been severely weakened in recent months.

The army says only 200 rebel fighters remain, down from an estimated 2,000 to 3,000 in 2002 - though this claim is impossible to verify.

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