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Armed Tribesmen in Philippines Release 12 Hostages

MANILA, Philippines -- Philippine police say armed tribesmen have released 12 hostages they were holding in a southern jungle hide-out to demand the release of jailed relatives.

Regional police chief Reynaldo Rafal says all of the hostages were freed Wednesday.

Most of those who were held are grade school teachers who were seized by six Manobo tribesmen last Friday in a remote southern town in Agusan del Sur province on Mindanao Island.

The hostage-takers were demanding the release of tribal leader Jobert "Ondo" Perez, who was jailed with three other tribesmen for taking 79 people hostage in the same place in 2009 over a long-running clan feud.

Perez was temporarily released to help end the standoff, and officials promised the gunmen they'd speed up the resolution of the case.

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