20 Jun 2003

Solomon Islands police say some hostages freed

4:28 pm on 20 June 2003

Solomon Islands police say some of the hostages being held by rebel leader Harold Keke on Guadalcanal's Weather Coast have been freed and others have escaped.

Spokesman John Selwyn Giaro says although he could not give exact figures, those freed include seven novices and four Brothers from the Church of Melanesia's Melanesian Brotherhood.

He says they are well and had not been harmed by Keke, after being taken hostage ten days ago.

Keke is believed to still be holding six Melanesian Brothers he took hostage at the beginning of May.