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Nine Peruvian Police Killed in Rescue Attempt

Police in Peru have imposed a curfew over an Amazon jungle region after battles between indigenous protesters and government forces killed at least 39 people.

The afternoon to dawn curfew was imposed Saturday after nine police officers were killed during an attempt to rescue 38 police officers held hostage by protesters at a remote Amazon oil facility.

Of the 38, officials said 22 officers were rescued when police stormed the state-owned facility. They said nine were killed and seven are missing.

The latest deaths follow clashes Friday that killed more than 30 people and wounded 50. The violence erupted as indigenous people protested against energy exploration on their lands in the Amazon.

The protests were in an area of northern Peru known as Curva del Diablo or "Devil's Curve." Indigenous leaders say police shot at hundreds of protesters from helicopters, but authorities say they were attacked while attempting to break up a roadblock.

Indigenous Peruvians have been blocking roads and waterways intermittently since April to demand that the government repeal laws they say encourage foreign companies to exploit their lands. Protesters have also shut down oil production in the region.

Some information for this report was provided by AFP, AP and Reuters.