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World IN BRIEF / TURKEY

Chechnya Supporters Holding Hostages

April 23, 2001|From Times Wire Reports

At least 20 pro-Chechen gunmen armed with rifles and shotguns stormed one of Istanbul's top luxury hotels, taking dozens of guests and staff members hostage, police said.

It was not clear if anyone was injured in the standoff. Police said early today that at least 30 people were being held in a conference hall.

There were reports of American guests at the hotel, but it was not clear whether they were among the hostages. The gunmen issued a statement saying they would not harm the hostages.

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