August 24, 2010
As the hostage crisis in Manila ends, the United Filipinos in Hong Kong (UNIFIL-MIGRANTE-HK) condoles with the families in Hong Kong of those who died and sympathizes with the other victims who got out safely but were surely traumatized by the tragic event of the past hours.
Filipino migrant workers in Hong Kong are appalled by this crime and greatly saddened by its ending.
According to unofficial tallies from Philippine media reports, five of the more than 20 passengers – all from Hong Kong – of the tourist bus held hostage by Police Senior Inspector Rolando Mendoza were killed. Though there has been no report yet of the status of those who came out alive from the bus, their 12-hour ordeal will definitely have grave impacts to their lives.
This act of hostage-taking that victimizes innocent civilians must be condemned.
We call for justice to the victims and all assistance should be made available to them especially those who survived to help in their speedy recovery from their trauma.
UNIFIL-MIGRANTE-HK also calls for a thorough investigation on how the responding police officers carried out the negotiations and the extraction of the hostage-taker and victims. The question of whether the crisis could have been handled better and faster should be resolved. All actions taken by negotiators and police operatives must be examined to the last detail. Even the allegations of slain hostage-taker Mendoza of injustices committed against him must be probed.
This, the police and Philippine government officials owe especially to the victims.
Finally, we call on the Philippine government and authorities to take steps to prevent this kind of crisis from happening again. It is their duty to keep safe and protect the lives of all civilians in the Philippines. (Posted by Bulatlat.com)