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3 Killed in Philippine Explosions

May 18, 2000

JOLO, Philippines (AP) _ Three grenades exploded today in a crowded fish market on a southern Philippine island where Muslim rebels are holding 21 hostages, police said. At least three people were killed.

At least 16 others were injured, many of them vendors in the fish market in Jolo city, the capital of Jolo Island.

Relatives and friends cried and wailed as the injured were treated.

``I heard explosions, then everybody started falling to the ground,″ said Basir Kasim, a market worker. ``Everybody started running away. There were a lot of bloodied people.″

Kasim’s shirt and hands were covered with blood from helping carry the wounded.

Abu Sayyaf rebels have been holding 21 hostages, including 10 foreign tourists, in a mountain camp on the island since April 23.

No one immediately took responsibility for the explosions.

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