IN BRIEF : Troops close in on rebels

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Puerto Cate - Several hundred Mexican government troops were yesterday headed toward the Chiapas town of Simojovel, which has been occupied by armed peasants.

A column of about 30 vehicles included lorries, two light tanks, an ambulance and off-road vehicles mounted with heavy machine-guns. With the troops were heavily armed police wearing flak jackets. The column was travelling towards Simojovel, seized on M o nday by armed peasants thought to be linked to the Zapatista National Liberation Army.