Congo govt says no talks with M23 rebels before Goma pullout

GOMA, Democratic Republic of Congo, Nov 25 (Reuters) -

C ongo's government will not negotiate with M23 rebels in the

east of the Central African country until the rebels pull out of

the city of Goma, a government spokesman said on Sunday.

Lambert Mende said President Joseph Kabila had met M23

representatives in Uganda for the first time on Saturday and had

reiterated his readiness to consider their demands.

"Negotiations will start after the (M23) withdrawal from

Goma. Even if we want to negotiate, this can't be before 48

hours," Mende said, referring to a deadline given to the rebels

on Saturday. Regional leaders on Saturday called on the rebels

to pull out of Goma.