'350 die' in Angola battle

LUANDA (AFP) - More than 350 people were killed and 1,500 injured in a battle between Unita rebels and Angolan government forces in the central city of Huambo, the government army said.

It said that Unita forces rained about 2,000 artillery shells on the city in the battle on Thursday. Government positions in Huambo, the embattled town where the Unita leader, Jonas Savimbi, has his headquarters, were all adequately protected, according to the government army.

The Angolan army chief, General Higino Carneiro, has said Angola would consider seeking foreign military aid to fight Unita. A United Nations attempt to hold peace talks in Addis Ababa collapsed on Monday and the three nations underwriting Angola's peace pact - the United States, Russia and the former colonial power, Portugal - blamed Unita for the failure.