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After 8 years of silence: Duterte says sorry to China, HK over 2010 Luneta hostage crisis

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President Rodrigo Duterte has finally apologized on the Philippines’ behalf for the 2010 hostage crisis in Luneta that left eight tourists from Hong Kong dead.

Duterte issued the apology Thursday (April 12) in a speech before the Filipino community in Hong Kong.

“Let me, for the first time, the Chinese government and the people of China have always been waiting for this. There has been no official apology coming form the Philippines regarding that incident that happened in August 2010,” he said.

“To the Chinese people who are here, from the bottom of my heart, as President of Republic of the Philippines, may I apologize formally to you now. We are sorry the incident happened, as humanly possible, I would like to guarantee this will never happen again. This will go along way to really assuage the feelings of the Chinese people,” the President added.

Duterte noted there has been no “official apology” from the Philippine government over the hostage taking incident, which resulted in a diplomatic crisis between Manila and Hong Kong.

Benigno Aquino III was the President when the hostage taking incident took place.

On August 23, 2010, disgruntled former police officer Rolando Mendoza hijacked a tourist bus in Luneta carrying Chinese tourists and four Filipinos. He killed eight hostages and injured seven others before he was shot dead by the police.

Results of the investigations conducted by the Philippine and Hong Kong governments showed Philippine officials’ incompetence bungled the negotiations which could have saved the hostages’ lives.