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Obama cheers capture of top Kony commander

The White House on Monday hailed the capture of one of African warlord Joseph Kony's top commanders, amid hopes that the arrest could be a big step on the road to catching the infamous Lord's Resistance Army (LRA) leader himself.

"The capture of Major General Ceasar Acellam is a testament to the resolve of Uganda and its military forces to work with regional forces to end the threat posed by the LRA," President Barack Obama's chief spokesman, Jay Carney, said in a statement.

Last year, Obama ordered 100 elite American troops to help a multinational force capture Kony, whose global notoriety exploded earlier this year with the mega-viral video "Kony 2012.""Ugandan and other regional forces continue to pursue the LRA and keep its leadership on the run," Carney said. "The United States joins regional governments and the African Union in calling on abductees and remaining members of the LRA to depart the ranks of the LRA and peacefully surrender. Support is available to help those who defect and peacefully surrender to return to their home communities and build a new life."

The Associated Press reported earlier that Acellam was caught Saturday after a brief firefight near the Congo-Central African Republic border.

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"While the capture of Acellam is an important step forward, the LRA continues to pose a deadly threat to civilians," Carney said. "The United States is committed to supporting the people and governments of the region in their collective efforts, in coordination with the African Union and United Nations, to protect civilians and end this threat."

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