A spokesman for a former militia leader in Republic of Congo whose fighters have staged deadly attacks in recent days is calling for an immediate cease-fire.

Jean Gustave Tondo told reporters Thursday that ex-militia leader Frederic Bitsangou wants a "political solution" to ongoing hostilities in the southern Pool region.

Bitsangou, a pastor, led the Ninjas Nsiloulou group until it disbanded in 2003. But fighters killed 17 people in April, and attacks picked up again last month.

Tondo said the attacks this year were to protest the re-election of President Denis Sassou N'Guesso in March.

Government officials were not immediately available to respond to the cease-fire call. Justice Minister Pierre Mabiala on Wednesday called the fighters "terrorists."