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UN Envoy Calls For The Release of POW

The Progress via Africa News
May 25, 1999

Freetown - The UN special envoy to Sierra Leone and head of the UN military observer mission to the country UNOMSIL Mr. Francis Okello has called for the release of all prisoners of war held by the various warring factions. The call by the UN special envoy came a day before substantive peace talks between the government and rebels gets underway in the Togolese capital, Lome.

According to Mr. Francis Okello, the request to have the prisoners released is in line with the terms of the cease-fire agreement between President Kabbah and leader of the Revolutionary United Front Corporal Foday Sankoh last week. The UN envoy said necessary arrangements will soon be put in place to accommodate the prisoners of war.

The rebels have been calling for the release of all rebel suspects and politicians who are held in detention for serving the ousted military junta in 1997,while the government wants the release of all non combatants held by the rebels. Meanwhile a two-man military delegation have arrived in Freetown. They are Colonel William Phillips of the USA and Lt. Colonel Mamoud Husseine of Bangladesh.

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