Some Philippines bus hostages may have been shot dead by “friendly fire”

September 10th, 2010 - 4:45 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Sept 10 (ANI): Investigators have admitted that some of the eight tourist hostages shot dead during a botched mission to save them from a bus hijacker in the Philippines, might have been accidentally hit by police bullets.

According to Sky News, Philippine justice secretary Leila de Lima said bullet trajectories and the hostages’ wounds indicate that some of the passengers may have been hit by “friendly fire”.

However, she did not confirm whether any of the shots fired by police were fatal.

Talking about the ‘friendly fire’ possibility, she said: “We are not focusing on that, but we should never miss that. Otherwise our report will be less than thorough.”

Eight tourists from Hong Kong, including two British passport holders, were killed on August 23 in Manila, after negotiations broke down with the gunman, former senior police inspector Rolando Mendoza, who began shooting, which forced the commandos to storm the bus with dozens of bullets in return.

“I shot two Chinese. I will finish them all if they do not stop,” Mendoza told a local radio station as the police assault was about to get under way.

China has criticised the rescue operation, saying that the Philippine force was ill equipped to handle hostage situations.

President Benigno Aquino III said that he would wait for a report from a fact-finding committee before he fires any officials for the fiasco. (ANI)

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