Muslim Rebels Attack Philippine Towns

A deadly attack by a Muslim separatist group in Zamboanga City, on the Philippine island of Mindanao, has evolved into a tense hostage crisis, while two other Muslim rebel groups staged separate attacks in neighboring towns. Starting early on Monday, hundreds of armed Moro National Liberation Front rebels, enraged by a failed peace deal with the Philippine government, landed on the coast of Zamboanga, with a reported goal of capturing the City Hall. Philippine Armed Forces responded, killing at least 14, and encircling the rebels, who have taken nearly 200 hostages to use as human shields. As the standoff in Zamboanga reached a fourth day, a separate, possibly unrelated attack took place on the neighboring island of Basilan, where approximately 150 members of two smaller Muslim rebel groups clashed with government forces, wounding three.

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