The Democratic Republic of Congo on Monday rejected a call for negotiations by Laurent Nkunda, leader of rebel forces which have routed government forces in the east of the country.
Government spokesman Lambert Mende told AFP that all "armed groups" in Nord-Kivu province should be treated in the same way.
"The government sees no reason to discriminate against other groups of Congolese who have propositions to make" on the crisis in the country, the spokesman added.
Nkunda called for "direct" talks with the government in a meeting with reporters on Sunday and threatened to try to bring the government in Kinshasa down if the offer was rejected.
Nkunda's group was one of several in Nord-Kivu who signed a ceasefire in January and the government spokesman said any contacts had to be part of this process.