By Chris Ochowun
AT LEAST 87 people including 25 UPDF soldiers were killed since March 1 when the LRA leader Joseph Kony declared a unilateral ceasefire in Acholi.
Lt. Gen. Salim Saleh, the National Reserve Force Commander and the field officer for the presidential peace team, said on Friday while responding to an accusation by the LRA deputy commander Brig. Vincent Otti.
Otti had claimed the UPDF had been attacking their positions by helicopter gunship during the ceasefire period.
Saleh said, â€œTwenty-five UPDF and 62 civilians were killed by the LRA rebels after Kony declared a ceasefire on March 1. Eleven vehicles were burnt, 182 people abducted, all in violation of the ceasefire.â€
Saleh was speaking during a discussion over Radio Mega FM in Gulu.
He said the rebels had continued to violate their own ceasefire, kill and abduct people, ambushing vehicles and attacking UPDF positions.
Otti insisted there should be a unilateral ceasefire in the whole of Acholi in order to facilitate a peaceful resolution of the rebellion.
He said it was the UPDF soldiers who had violated their own ceasefire declared by President Yoweri Museveni by shelling LRA positions in Lapul in Pader district.
Saleh said the presidential peace team was sandwiched between the LRA and the UPDF who have been fighting for long.
He challenged the UPDF hardliners to co-operate with the peace team to resolve the conflict.
Gulu LC5 boss Walter Ochora, Gulu Movement chairman Charles Odora Oryem and assistant RDC Semei Okwir attended.