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First Hong Kong hostage victim receives Manila payout

2010 Luneta Hostage Crisis (AP PHOTO)

A Hong Kong woman who was fatally shot in the face and practically losing half of her jaw during the 2010 Manila hostage crisis received the first payout from the Philippine government.

Likewise, talks over imposing sanctions against the Philippine government continue as Hong Kong lawmakers have mooted a cancellation of visa-free arrangements for Filipino visitors and trade sanctions.

President Benigno Aquino III, in a joint statement with the Hong Kong government agreed to give the 36-year-old victim Yik Siu-ling an undisclosed amount for her surgery.

“President Aquino, having heard of the urgent need of Ms. Yik for surgeries, instructed (his cabinet secretary) to turn over to the HKSAR Government an additional token of solidarity to defray the cost of imminent surgeries,” the statement published on Tuesday read.

The amount was given as compensation from Filipino businessmen “as a manifestation of the Filipinos’ humane consideration of the plight of the victims and their families.”

In a separate statement, the Hong Kong government on Tuesday said that Chief Executive Leung Chun-ying believes that there’s “substantive progress on the Manila hostage-taking incident” made.

Cabinet Secretary Rene Almendras met with Hong Kong senior officials regarding the incident.

In 2010, a former police officer hijacked a tourist bus full of Hong Kong nationals for a day and eventually went on a rampage after negotiations bugged down, leading to the deaths of eight Hong Kong tourists and injuring others.

Hong Kong is still demanding for apology and compensation from the Philippine government but President Aquino is not buying the idea because the death was primarily caused by the hostage taker.

Despite this, the Hong Kong government still reached out to the victims of typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan). However, Hong Kong came in for harsh criticisms after it did not pull out the sanctions despite the tragedy.

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