LIBREVILLE (Reuters) - Central African Republic’s government and rebels have agreed to a temporary ceasefire deal, two rebel sources with knowledge of the talks told Reuters on Thursday.
One of the sources, present at the negotiations in Gabon’s capital Libreville, said Central African Republic President Francois Bozize would propose a national unity government with the Seleka rebel coalition.
“The principal of a ceasefire has been agreed and the parties are going to sign it shortly,” he said, asking not to be identified.
It was not immediately clear if the rebels would accept the unity government proposal. They having previously insisted that Bozize’s resignation was a precondition for peace and that the president, who came to power in a Chadian-backed 2003 coup, should stand trial at the International Criminal Court.
The one-month old rebellion has come to within striking distance of the riverside capital Bangui, posing the biggest threat yet to Bozize’s decade in charge of the minerals-rich former French colony.
But African leaders have deployed hundreds of troops to the country in recent weeks to bolster its military against the rebels, who accuse Bozize of reneging on a 2007 peace deal meant to provide jobs to insurgents who laid down their weapons.
Reporting by Jean Rovys Dabana; Additional reporting and writing by Richard Valdmanis; Editing by Daniel Flynn