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Violence Mars Philippine Elction

President Fidel Ramos’ candidates took early leads Tuesday in national elections marked by violence that claimed at least 18 lives and forced postponement of balloting in several communities.

Tensions rose in the capital and elsewhere as rivals traded fraud charges during the cumbersome vote count, and one private agency tabulating national returns stopped issuing results Tuesday after discrepancies were found in figures released so far, staffers said.

Two people were injured Monday when a grenade exploded in front of the town hall in Ternate, 30 miles southwest of Manila.

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