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5 freed in Bogota; 30 still held

Left-wing guerrillas inside the Dominican REpublic's embassy here released five of their hostages Sunday but threatened to blow up the building and kill the others if their demands were not met.

Justice Minister Hugo Escobar, reporting the threats to jounalists, said the situation was serious."Whatever happens, the primary responsibility will lie on the subversives."

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The guerrillas have now released 23 hostages, but are still holding more than 30 others, including 13 ambassadors.

The release of the five hostages came after 95 minutes of negotiations between the government officials and guerrillas.

Earlier Sunday, official sources said two persons were shot and killed and two others wounded when a car broke through the military barricade around the building. They were shot by soldiers when they failed to stop their cars.

Reports that the guerrillas would request the mediation of Pope John Paul II could not be confirmed, but a call to the occupied mission was answered by a man who said: "Please hang up immediately, we are waiting for a call from the Vatican."

The embassy has been occupied since Feb. 27.


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