Missing

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Hostage Talks

“At least nine of 57 hostages held by gunmen have been released as negotiations with the government continue in the southern Philippines. Negotiator Josefina Bajade told reporters the hostages were all safe after a night being held by men of the Manobo tribe in eastern Mindanao. Some reports suggest fresh demands have been made by the gunmen. The hostage-taking comes three weeks after the political killing of 57 people in another southern province. Soldiers have been sent to the area near Prosperidad in Agusan del Sur to help restrict the movement of the hostage-takers. The Philippine military spokesman told the BBC all 75 hostages, taken early on Thursday morning, had been released but later reports indicated dozens were still being held. The hostage-takers' leader, Ondo Perez, has stated demands that murder charges against his group must be dropped and members of a rival group disarmed within a week.”
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