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Chinese deputy consul, finance officer shot dead in Cebu

The Philippine Star

CEBU, Philippines – Two Chinese diplomats were killed, while the Chinese consul general in Cebu City was wounded when a Chinese woman went on a shooting rampage in a restaurant in Cebu City yesterday afternoon.

Killed were Deputy Consul General Sun Shan and finance officer Hui Li. They died from gunshot wounds while being treated in hospital.

Wounded Consul General Song Rong Hua was also taken to a hospital in Cebu City for treatment.

Song has been in his post for only a few weeks, it was learned from one of the Chinese diplomats.

His condition was not immediately known.

Suspects Li Quing Liang and his wife Guo Jing are in the custody of the Cebu City police, according to Central Visayas police director Chief Supt. Tom Banas.

The suspects invoked diplomatic immunity as they allegedly are also Chinese consular officers, a source told The STAR.

The female suspect worked at the Chinese consulate, Philippine National Police spokesman Wilben Mayor said in a text message to Agence France Presse.

Police retrieved a semi-automatic .45 Colt pistol from the scene, he added.

The shooting took place at around 1:30 p.m. at the Lighthouse Restaurant on Mango Avenue, Barangay Carreta, Cebu City, Banas said.

It occurred in a private room of the upmarket restaurant, a favorite of local politicians, Lighthouse manager Stephen John Patero told AFP by phone.

“We did not really see the actual shooting,” he said.

“They were inside a private function room. There was a series of gunshots.”

Waiters who served them had heard the guests shouting at each other, Patero said.

“They are all friends who apparently figured in an argument,” he said, quoting the waiters.

Li Lingxiao, a spokesman for the Chinese embassy in Manila, said she could not yet comment.

“Our embassy is still verifying the facts,” she said in a text message to AFP. “We’ll update you as soon as I have anything new.”

Department of Foreign Affairs spokesman Charles Jose also had no comment.

Authorities were still determining what happened, he said.

Police said the group entered the restaurant and were heard talking in Chinese.

The Chinese consul general was reportedly celebrating his birthday at the restaurant.

Based on footage from CCTV camera at the restaurant, the group was having lunch when a heated argument broke out and the suspects started shooting.

Police have coordinated with the Chinese embassy as part of protocol and the Chinese ambassador to the Philippines, Zhao Jianhua, will be flying to Cebu City to personally look into the matter, Banas said.

The two suspects claimed they could not speak English, Banas said, adding they had a lawyer.

National Bureau of Investigation special investigator Larry Dominguez went to the Cebu police office yester- day to get details.

The weapon and empty shells recov- ered from the scene are with the police Crime Laboratory for ballistics tests. — With Cecille Suerte Felipe

ACIRC AGENCE FRANCE PRESSE BANAS BARANGAY CARRETA CEBU CEBU CITY CENTRAL VISAYAS CHARLES JOSE CHIEF SUPT CHINESE POLICE
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