Liberia's three warring factions agreed on a cease-fire Wednesday, boosting prospects for an end to civil warfare that has claimed more than 10,000 lives in 11 months.
The accord was signed at a summit attended by leaders of 13 Western African countries convened to seek a settlement in Liberia.Signing the agreement were Charles Taylor, head of the main rebel faction; Prince Johnson, leader of a breakaway rebel force; and Maj. Wilmot Diggs of the Liberian army, representing the followers of slain President Samuel Doe.
The meeting took place in Mali's capital city, Bamako, 400 miles northeast of the Liberian capital, Monrovia.
Details of the cease-fire's provisions were not immediately available.
The talks that led to the accord marked the first time that all three sides had met face-to-face for negotiations to resolve the conflict. Taylor had refused to attend previous peace talks.
Taylor began the uprising by invading Liberia from the Ivory Coast Dec. 24. He has declared himself president and says his forces control most of Liberia, a West African nation founded in 1847 by freed American slaves.
Also at the conference was veteran opposition politician Amos Sawyer, installed as Liberian president with the backing of an 8,000-strong West African task force.
The task force contains soldiers from Nigeria, Ghana, Guinea, Gambia and Sierra Leone. The leaders of all of the countries were at the conference except Guinea, which sent a Cabinet minister.
The rebel faction led by Prince Johnson broke with Taylor. Johnson's fighters killed Doe in September.