Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Hong Kong Issues 'Black Alert' after Deadly Manila Hostage Crisis

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Hong Kong Issues 'Black Alert' after Deadly Manila Hostage Crisis

Article excerpt

Hong Kong officials were critical of the handling of a deadly Manila hostage crisis that ended with the deaths of eight Chinese tourists in the Philippines. Hong Kong issues a black alert, its strongest warning, for Chinese tourists.

Eight Chinese tourists were killed Monday after a hostage crisis in the Philippines came to a violent end. The incident is likely to heap pressure on new president Benigno Aquino, who must confront the diplomatic fallout with his giant neighbor while seeking to reassure tourists that his impoverished nation of 92 million is safe to visit.

Philippine security forces stormed a tourist bus in the capital, Manila, at around 8.30 p.m. local time after an 11-hour standoff with a man armed with a M-16 rifle who had boarded the bus, taking hostage 22 tourists from Hong Kong and three Filipinos.

The gunman - a police officer protesting his firing in 2008 - became agitated as night fell and specialist SWAT units encircled the bus. He began shooting hostages, and millions of TV viewers worldwide, including many in China and Hong Kong, watched in horror in bars and restaurants as security forces stormed the bus.

IN PICTURES: Philippines bus hostage crisis

Donald Tsang, Hong Kong's chief executive, criticized Philippine authorities for their conduct during the siege. "The way it was handled, particularly the outcome I find disappointing," he said.

The gunman, a highly decorated former senior police inspector identified as Roland Mendoza, was eventually shot by a police sniper.

Hong Kong immediately issued a "black alert" to travelers, indicating the existence of a "severe threat," the state Xinhua news agency reported.

The government has asked all tour groups in The Philippines to return to Manila, a move which threatens to punch a hole in valuable tourist revenue in the archipelego of 7,000 islands. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.