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Taliban agrees to Swat Valley cease-fire

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ISLAMABAD, Pakistan, Feb. 24 (UPI) -- The head of the Taliban group that controls about 70 percent of the Swat Valley in Pakistan announced an indefinite cease-fire Tuesday.

Muslim Khan, a spokesman for Maulana Fazullah, told reporters that the Taliban would halt military activities in Swat for "an indefinite period," The New York Times reported.

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The government has offered the Taliban an agreement that would include allowing Sharia law to be practiced in Swat. But officials said that the fighting would have to stop first.

The Swat Valley about 100 miles north of Islamabad is a beautiful area that once attracted tourists and trekkers from around the world. In the past year, Taliban militants have pushed back the Pakistani army.

The Pakistani army announced Monday that it was returning to barracks in Swat.

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