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The World

February 02, 1988

The release of two French children captured with their mother by the Abu Nidal guerrilla group is being delayed because they will not leave their mother behind, Lucien Bitterlin, leader of a pro-Arab lobby group in France and a mediator in the case, told reporters in West Beirut. The guerrillas said Nov. 8 that Jacqueline Valente and her daughters Virginie, 5, and Marie-Laure, 6, were captured with five Belgians on a French yacht off the Israeli-occupied Gaza Strip. The adults were accused of being Israeli spies. Walid Khaled, an Abu Nidal spokesman, said Algeria has agreed to arrange release operations for the children.

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