Gunman shoots diplomat in Philippines

MANILA – A senior Chinese diplomat was hurt while two other embassy staff were killed on Wednesday (Oct 21) when a gunman fired at them as they were having lunch inside a restaurant in Cebu City in central Philippines.

Chinese consul-general Song Ronghua was taken to a hospital.

But two of his aides – identified in a Cebu Daily News report as “Hui Li” and “Sun Shen” – did not make it, according to Chief Superintendent Wilben Mayor, spokesman of the Philippine National Police.

The alleged shooter, a Chinese woman, was arrested.  A city councilor identified her as Ms Li Qing Ling.

Police said Mr Song was attending a birthday party at the Lighthouse Restaurant along General Maxilom Street when Ms Li opened fire at around 1.30pm.

The authorities are still investigating what prompted the shooting.

The Chinese embassy in Manila have yet to issue a statement.

A spokesman said the Philippine Foreign Ministry had yet to verify the report.

Mr Song was appointed China’s consul general in charge of Cebu only last September.

In a news item shortly after his appointment, Mr Song had said the Philippines and China “have no excuses to quarrel”.

He had said he would work on “fostering and consolidating friendship” among Filipinos and Chinese.