BEIJING, Jan. 29 (Xinhua) -- Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying on Wednesday said the central government backs Hong Kong's handling of the aftermath of a hostage tragedy in the Philippines three years ago.
Hua's comments came after the Hong Kong government declared sanctions against the Philippines due to Manila's failure to make official apology and meet the demands of the families of the victims.
Hong Kong's Chief Executive CY Leung on Wednesday announced that from Feb. 5 14-day visa-free stays for holders of Philippine diplomatic and service passports will be suspended.
Replying to a reporter's question, Hua said the Chinese government urges the Philippines to respect the concerns of the injured and families of the victims and solve the matter as soon as possible.
A dismissed local police officer, Rolando Mendoza, hijacked a tourist bus carrying 25 people in Manila on Aug. 23, 2010. Mendoza and eight Hong Kong tourists were killed, with another seven injured.
Philippine President Benigno Aquino has consistently refused to make an open apology.
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