Rebel leader will not sign Mozambique deal

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The Independent Online
ROME (Reuter) - Afonso Dhlakama, the Mozambican rebel leader, is refusing to sign a peace settlement tomorrow to end 16 years of civil war in the famine-stricken country, the Italian Foreign Ministry said.

President Joaquim Chissano of Mozambique was already on his way to Rome. Diplomats said President Robert Mugabe of Zimbabwe, who helped broker the talks, was in London on his way to Italy and had been asked to put off his trip. The Italian statement said Mr Dhlakama, who at a meeting with President Chissano in Botswana on 17 September had agreed to sign the accord by the original 1 October deadline, was now expressing some strong reservations. It did not elaborate, but diplomats said Mr Dhlakama, head of the Mozambique National Resistance Movement (Renamo), had come up with last-minute proposals and wanted to rewrite key points of the agreement covering military and security issues.