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    Philippines Delays Release of Hostage Report


    by NTDTelevision

    And law makers in Philippines are questioning a government decision allowing China a copy of a report on the Manila bus hijacking.

    The law makers say Filipinos have a right to know about the findings before another country.

    The office of Philippine President Benigno Aquino has not made public a report on the Manila hostage-taking that left eight tourists from Hong Kong dead.

    The office says it wants to share a copy with Chinese authorities first.

    However the move has drawn flak from lawmakers, who say Filipinos have a right to know about the findings before another country.

    The Philippines' Justice Secretary says it will not take long for the government to release the report after it hands a copy to the Chinese Embassy in Manila.

    [Leila De Lima, Justice Secretary]:
    "The unofficial arrangement or agreement is just to show (the report) to them, just to check whether how comprehensive, how complete the report is. But we do not again expect them to interfere with how we did our work, so it's really just a matter of courtesy."

    Lawmakers have slammed the government's decision not to immediately publicize the findings.

    [Leila De Lima, Justice Secretary]:
    "I don't agree that there is such a breach or abdication of sovereignty, because it's just a diplomatic initiative."

    Opposition Senator Joker Arroyo says Filipinos should be the first to know why the rescue operations were mismanaged.

    Some Philippine officials could face criminal and administrative sanctions over the poor handling of the hijacking and rescue attempt.

    The panel could only recommend action against those it found accountable for the handling of the August 23 crisis, and the government will decide what action is taken.