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Guerrillas Kill Three Police Officers In Rescue Of Comrade

August 20, 1986

QUITO, Ecuador (AP) _ Leftist guerrillas wearing white medical uniforms rescued a comrade from a hospital Tuesday and shot to death three police officers who tried to stop them, the government said.

Interior Minister Luis Robles told reporters at the Eugenio Espejo Hospital near the center of this Andean capital that five men and a woman took part in the attack.

He said they belonged to the Alfaro Vive Brigade, a leftist guerrilla group fighting against the government of conservative President Leon Febres Cordero. The group which was founded in 1979 has stepped up its attacks in the past year.

Robles said the guerrillas entered the hospital in white clothing similar to that used by hospital personnel.

As they were leaving, they were intercepted by three police officers and opened fire on them, killing all three, Robles said. No other details of the escape were available immediately.

Robles said police had initiated a search for the rebels, but he did not indicate whether any suspects were detained.

The hospitalized guerrilla was identified as Leonardo Vera Viteri, who was captured last year during an unsuccessful kidnapping of an Ecuadorean businessman.

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