Mali rebels suspend role in peace accord

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Associated Press

Posted on September 26, 2013 at 3:02 PM

Updated Thursday, Sep 26 at 3:30 PM

BAMAKO, Mali (AP) — An ethnic Tuareg separatist group says it's suspending its participation in a peace accord that was supposed to lead to talks with Mali's new government.

Thursday's announcement is a major setback for Mali's newly elected president, Ibrahim Boubacar Keita.

The National Movement for the Liberation of the Azawad says it and two other groups are halting their participation.

NMLA founding member Mossa Ag Acharatoumane says the government has not held up its part of the June agreement.

There was no immediate reaction from the government.

The accord let Mali's military return to the northern town of Kidal and was supposed to lead to more talks.

Tuaregs have long sought independence in Mali's north. They regained their prominence there after a French-led military operation this year drove out al-Qaida-linked militants.

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