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Islamist group calls ceasefire in Nigeria

Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:23 AM

MAIDUGURI, Nigeria, Jan. 29 (UPI) -- A man identifying himself as a commander of the Islamist sect Boko Haram has announced a cease-fire agreement with security forces in northeastern Nigeria.

Sheikh Muhammed Abdulazeez said in addition to the cease-fire in Borno State, the government has promised to release some jailed sect members, Nigeria's Leadership Newspapers reported Tuesday.

Abdulazeez released a statement calling on "all those who identify themselves with us and our cause to, from today, lay down their arms."

The statement went on to explain that Boko Haram has met with Borno State government on two occasions and was embracing "the peace of dialogue."

"People should know that, henceforth, we should not be held responsible for a single bloodshed," he said.

It was unclear whether Abdulazeez was speaking for sect leader Abubakar Shekau.

Borno State government hailed the truce announcement as a welcome development.

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