Anger grows over Manila hostage deaths

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The Independent Online

The Philippines acknowledged "inadequacies" in handling a hostage crisis that killed eight Hong Kong tourists, as anger over the botched negotiations erupted yesterday in Hong Kong with demonstrations and harsh words.

The Philippine President Benigno Aquino III declared today a national day of mourning. Officials promised a full investigation into how the hijacker was able to gun down eight of the 15 hostages before a sniper killed him.

The Philippine Interior Secretary Jesse Robredo acknowledged there were problems with how the crisis was handled. "Had we been better prepared, better equipped, better trained, maybe the response would have been quicker," Mr Robredo said.

In Hong Kong, sorrow quickly evolved into outrage, with several of the semiautonomous Chinese territory's political parties leading protesters to the Philippine consulate.