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8 Killed in Philippines Kidnapping

November 29, 2000

ZAMBOANGA, Philippines (AP) _ At least eight people were killed when government forces clashed with a group that abducted the wife of a businessman in the southern Philippines, police said Wednesday.

The men, wearing ski masks, kidnapped Marilyn Tiu from her home in Alicia in Zamboanga del Sur province late Tuesday, and dragged her to waiting speedboats for an escape, a police report said.

The kidnappers fired at villagers as they ran toward the boats, killing a militiaman and three civilians, said Col. Hilario Atendido, spokesman for the military’s Southern Command.

Police and soldiers gave chase, killing four of the kidnappers at sea and recovering two of their speedboats, Atendido said. But those holding Mrs. Tiu, whose family owns a fleet of minibus and cargo trucks, escaped.

Atendido said no group claimed responsibility, but two rebel groups have been reported to operate in the area 500 miles south of Manila. The military says the rebels kidnap for ransom to finance their struggle for a separate Islamic state. The smaller group, the Abu Sayyaf, is holding an American and a Filipino hostage.