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Philippines hostage chronology

+ April 23: Abu Sayyaf rebels abduct 21 people _ 10 Westerners, nine Malaysians and two Filipinos _ from Malaysia's Sipadan resort and take them to Jolo Island in the Philippines. Two Americans escape at the resort.

+ May: Troops encircle the rebels' hide-out in Jolo, but withdraw after clashes. Negotiations start with Libyan envoy's help. Rebels make political demands, but later insist on $1-million for each Westerner.

+ May 18: Three grenades explode in a Jolo market. Four killed, dozens injured. Police blame Abu Sayyaf.

+ June 3: Rebels kidnap 10 journalists and release them 10 hours later for $25,000.

+ June 24: First Malaysian hostage freed.

+ July 1: Thirteen Filipino Christian evangelists arrive at rebel camp to pray for hostages and are taken captive themselves. One is released several weeks afterward.

+ July 2: German reporter abducted. Released July 27 after his magazine pays ransom.

+ July 9: Three French journalists kidnapped.

+ July 14: Second Malaysian released.

+ July 17: Ailing German woman and four Malaysians freed. Philippine military says $5.5-million ransom paid so far.

+ July 24: Two Filipino journalists abducted. Grenade blast at Jolo's Roman Catholic cathedral injures one man. The journalists are freed five days later.

+ July 25: Grenade explodes inside a coffee shop on Jolo, injuring 14.

+ July 30: Foreign journalists leave Jolo.

+ Aug. 14: Libyan jetliner arrives in Manila. Hopes rise for release of all hostages.

+ Aug. 16: Filipino woman freed.

+ Aug. 18: Release of three remaining Malaysians.

+ Aug. 19: Expected release of hostages fails when Libya offers only $700,000 for each.

+ Aug. 27: Four women, one South African and three French, and a German man freed after Libya pays $1-million each.

+ Aug. 28: South African man released. American Muslim abducted.

+ Sept. 9: Four Europeans _ two Finns, one French and one German _ released despite bloody attack on two go-betweens by rival rebel faction.

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