China’s consul general in the Philippines’ second biggest city was wounded and two of his staff members were killed on Wednesday during a lunchtime gun attack at a restaurant, police said.
Two other Chinese at the lunch, a consular officer and her husband, were arrested on suspicion of involvement in the shootings, national police spokesman Wilben Mayor told AFP.
Officers retrieved a semi-automatic .45 Colt pistol and three bullet shells from the scene, he added.
Police said the attack occurred at 1:30pm at Lighthouse, a popular restaurant that serves Filipino food in Cebu, the trading capital of the central Philippines and the nation’s second biggest city. Staff at the upmarket restaurant told AFP a group of nine people had gathered in a private room to celebrate the birthday of the consul general, Song Ronghua.
Restaurant cashier Remedios Rivalde, 27, said she was at work at the cash register outside of the function room when she heard gunshots.
She said the reservation had been made shortly before lunch for the consul general’s birthday adding that “they ordered a lot of food, but no liquor”.
Song was shot in the neck, but his injuries were not believed to be life threatening and he was in a stable condition in hospital, regional police chief Tom Banas told AFP.
Police identified his dead staff members as Sun Shan, the deputy consul general, and Hui Li, a finance officer.
Banas said the husband and wife were arrested without any resistance. But he said they had not immediately co-operated with police, and so the details of the shootings and the motives were not known.
“They claimed they cannot speak English. Maybe they don’t want to give a statement,” he said, adding they had a lawyer.
Published in The Express Tribune, October 22nd, 2015.
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