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Standoff ends in surrender

Associated Press Writer

SAN JOSE, Costa Rica – A 20-year-old Kazakhstan native turned himself over to police on Friday, ending a three-hour standoff and safely releasing a man he had been holding at the Russian Embassy in Costa Rica, authorities said.Roman Bogdanyants covered his face as he was escorted by police from the building, followed by a Russian man that police spokesman Francisco Ruiz identified as a former hostage.Officials originally reported an armed gunman had seized eight hostages, quickly releasing five. But Russian Ambassador Valery Nikolayenko told Channel 7 Telenoticias in a phone interview during the standoff that he and three other officials had remained in the building to help negotiate a peaceful end to the conflict.Immigration spokeswoman Heidi Bonilla told The Associated Press that Bogdanyants arrived in Costa Rica in 2005. Police earlier had described him as an Uzbek.A family friend, Artur Mitiniani, told Channel 7 that the family had lost $54,000 because of problems with a Russian citizen who Bogdanyants met at the embassy.In July 2004, a Costa Rican security guard took several hostages at the Chilean Embassy where he worked in San Jose, eventually killing himself and three embassy employees. The guard, Orlando Jimenez, 54, was upset about a pending transfer.


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