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Filipino police handling of crisis questioned

08-25-2010 08:42 BJT Special Report:HK Tourists Held Hostage in Manila |

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The Filipino Police's handling of the hostage crisis is under intense scrutiny as questions are being asked why the situation escalated so quickly. Experts are asking why opportunities to end the hostage drama peacefully or kill the gunman weren't taken.

Filipino Police arrived at the scene just minutes after their former colleague took the bus, its driver and passengers hostage in Manila.

Negotiators were immediately sent to speak with former Police Senior Inspector Ronaldo Mendoza.

He was demanding his job back after being fired over extortion charges.

To many, that didn't seem like an unreachable goal considering 21 lives were on the line.

Reports suggest police also asked Mendoza's brother to talk to him. He is a policeman. Their talk ended in a fight which led to a breakdown in the negotiation process.

During the standoff with the hostage taker, police were allowed to refuel the bus to keep the air conditioner running and to bring food to the hostages.

During that time, Mendoza was standing at the door of the bus with his gun hanging over his shoulder. Police snipers stationed around the cordon had a clear shot to take him out, but the police chief decided against that because he thought the gunman was showing signs of kindness.

Mendoza reportedly threatened to kill all of the hostages after negotiations started to fail and he could see the tactical police surround the bus.

Police tried to break the window and door with a sledge hammer, but failed continuously. They engaged in a shoot out with Mendoza which lasted for hours, before the police finally took him down - and shot Mendoza dead.

The police's handling of this crisis is being questioned by law enforcement experts around the world.

Editor:Zhang Jingya |Source:

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