TEGUCIGALPA, HONDURAS, OCT. 15 -- President Jose Azcona has called on the Sandinistas to negotiate a cease-fire directly with rebels seeking their overthrow and said his government will be released from obligations under a Central American peace plan unless Managua complies fully with it by a Nov. 7 deadline.

In an interview late yesterday in the Presidential Palace here, the Honduran president joined a growing chorus of Central American demands for direct peace talks between the Sandinistas and leaders of the U.S.-backed rebels.

Costa Rican President Oscar Arias, the architect of the Central American peace accord and winner of this year's Nobel Peace Prize, and Salvadoran President Jose Napoleon Duarte, who is visiting Washington, each called this week for direct negotiations between the Sandinistas and the rebels.

Azcona said Nicaragua's compliance must include "a negotiated cease-fire, not a unilateral cease-fire," the release of all political prisoners as part of a "general amnesty," the lifting of a state of emergency and guarantees of complete freedom of expression.

If the Sandinista rulers of Nicaragua do not meet their obligations under the peace accord, Azcona said, he would not ask the United States to suspend aid to the rebels.

Moreover, he implied, Congress in that case should approve more aid to the insurgents, known as contras.

Nicaragua has rejected contra proposals for cease-fire negotiations, insisting instead on bilateral talks with the United States. Rather than negotiate a truce with rebel leaders, the Sandinistas have declared a limited unilateral cease-fire now applicable in four areas of Nicaragua and have initiated approaches to local contra field commanders to urge acceptance of a limited amnesty.

The Sandinistas until now have also ruled out the release of all "counterrevolutionary" prisoners in a general amnesty.

Costa Rican President Arias told The New York Times Tuesday night, "Now more than ever I am going to insist that a negotiated "Let them bring a copy of the amnesty decree."

-- President Jose Azcona

cease-fire in Nicaragua is indispensable if we are to achieve lasting peace in Central America." He said that without an agreement between the Sandinistas and senior contra leaders, the peace accord might fail.

Duarte said at the White House yesterday that none of the accord's five signatories -- Nicaragua, El Salvador, Costa Rica, Honduras and Guatemala -- can be "permitted to take only cosmetic or half measures" to comply with it.

The peace plan does not explicitly require any government to negotiate with armed rebels, but calls for "dialogue with all unarmed political groups of internal opposition and with those that have taken advantage of amnesty."

The contras, however, have insisted that direct cease-fire negotiations are implicit in a requirement that each government "undertake all the necessary actions to obtain an effective cease-fire within a constitutional framework."

Despite the ambiguity on this point, the governments of El Salvador and Guatemala last week held peace negotiations with representatives of their countries' respective rebel groups. Although no concrete results were achieved beyond the establishment of a negotating process, the talks added to pressure on the Sandinistas to deal directly with the contras.

Among those urging such talks in Nicaragua has been Cardinal Miguel Obando y Bravo, the president of a national reconciliation commission set up under the peace plan.

The plan calls for cease-fires in Central America's wars, amnesties, democratic reforms, an end to aid for insurgents and a ban on the use of any participating country's territory "to destabilize" another. All these measures are to take effect simultaneously Nov. 7.

But with three weeks to go before that deadline, Azcona said he does not think the Sandinistas have done enough to comply.

"The day there is a general amnesty, and when the government of Nicaragua is ready to talk to whomever . . . that would begin the demonstration that they are on the road to compliance with the accord," Azcona said. If the Sandinistas do not comply fully by Nov. 7, "we are not going to ask the government of the United States to suspend aid to the contras," he added.

Azcona said that "if they {the Sandinistas} don't comply, it's up to the United States to look for the way to protect their friends, who are the neighbors of Nicaragua, and those friends who have a right to liberty."

He said an international verification commission formed to monitor compliance with the peace accord would not be allowed to search this country for contra bases if Honduras believes Nicaragua has not complied fully with its amnesty and democratization requirements.

"Let them bring a copy of the amnesty decree in Nicaragua," Azcona said of the verification commission. "Let them bring a copy of the decree suspending the state of emergency in Nicaragua."

For his part, Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega has said he would not feel bound by the Nov. 7 deadline if the contras were still fighting in Nicaragua.

To demonstrate Honduran compliance with the peace accord, Azcona said he sent invitations yesterday to opposition politicians and Roman Catholic Church leaders to join a national reconciliation commission mandated by the accord. Honduras previously had resisted forming such a body here on grounds that the country has no political prisoners and already enjoys democracy, reasoning disputed by some opposition and human rights activists.

Azcona said he had decided to form the commission so no one could accuse Honduras of noncompliance as a pretext for pulling out of the peace accord. Azcona, whose country is one of the Reagan administration's staunchest allies in Central America, is scheduled to visit Washington next week to confer with Reagan and congressional leaders.Washington Post correspondent William Branigin contributed to this report.