'No anti-Filipino sentiment in HK'

0 CommentsPrint E-mail Global Times, August 31, 2010
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Members of a Hong Kong police forensic team Monday examine the tourist bus used in the hostage-hijacking last week by an ex-policeman in suburban Manila. The Philippines allowed Hong Kong police to examine the bus where eight Hong Kong tourists died when Manila police stormed the vehicle, but told them they could not interfere in an investigation into the tragedy.

Local authorities and the Philippine consul general in Hong Kong said Monday that they detected no "anti-Philippines sentiment" in the city in the wake of the Manila hostage bloodshed, as fears are rising that some Hongkongers would vent their anger toward Filipinos.

Text messages circulated last week among the Filipino community in Hong Kong, claiming that more than 30 Filipino domestic helpers had lost their jobs following the hostage crisis in Manila, in which eight Hong Kong people were killed last week, AFP reported Monday.

Fears were deepened among the Filipino migrant community by reports that three Filipinos were killed in Hong Kong last week, according to AFP.

Ngai Wing-chit, Hong Kong's deputy secretary for security, dismissed the rumors as groundless at a press briefing Monday.

"We do not see the emergence of an anti-Philippines sentiment in Hong Kong," he was quoted by AFP as saying.

He also said immigration officers in Hong Kong who tracked the actual situation did not see a trend of Filipino helpers being sacked.

Citing immigration statistics from June to August, he said the average number of early job contract terminations among Filipino helpers remained unchanged at about 150 a day last week.

In an interview with the Philippine's DZBB-TV station, the Philippine consul general in Hong Kong, Claro Cristobal, also dismissed the rumors, which claimed Filipinos were targeted in Hong Kong after the hostage-taking incident.

He admitted his office did receive e-mails, text messages and phone calls claiming that Filipinos were attacked at gunpoint or stabbed in Hong Kong, especially when the Philippine flag was placed on the coffin of the dismissed policeman who took the hostages and killed eight. But all these claims were groundless, he said.

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