Muslim rebels display human shield tied by rope in southern Philippine standoff

Rogue Muslim rebels seeking to declare an independent state put a dozen civilians tied together by rope on display as a human shield on Wednesday as a standoff with security forces in a southern Philippine city entered its third day.

Waving white flags, the hostages shouted "please don't shoot" at soldiers as rebel snipers perched on roof of a residential block fired at the troops about 500 meters away in the Santa Barbara district of Zamboanga, a key port on the southern island of Mindanao.

The news report does not mention it by Zamboanga is a largely Christian city in the largely Muslim south. A pastor has been taken hostage and several Christians are among the many injured in an attack by a rebel group in the Philippines.

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