• Conditions of three Pinoys in Beijing stable

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    The conditions of the three Filipinos who were injured in the road accident in Tiananmen Square in Beijing remain stable, the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) said on Tuesday.

    The Filipinos—the husband of the Filipina who died in the incident and their three children—gained multiple fractures when a sports utility vehicle (SUV) crashed into them while they were walking at the sidewalk of the Tiananmen Square in Beijing. The square is adjacent to the historic Forbidden City where millions of tourists flock every year.

    The SUV ploughed through the tourists and immediately caught fire near the entrance to the Forbidden City, reports said.

    Raul Hernandez, Foreign Affairs spokesman, said in a press briefing that representatives from the Philippine Embassy in Beijing already visited the three survivors.

    “The embassy continues its coordination with the Beijing Municipal Public Security Bureau on the matter of repatriation and the latter’s ongoing investigation into the incident,” he said.

    The official added that the Philippine embassy in Beijing will extend “all appropriate assistance, particularly in their immediate repatriation and in the repatriation of remains of their loved one.”

    Hernandez did not reveal the names of the victims as the family wished for privacy “at this difficult time.”

    A separate report said the couple were both doctors.

    Beijing police did not classify whether it was an accident or an act of terror attack but reports said they are looking into the possibility that two Uighurs may be responsible for the incident.

    The Uighurs are Turkic-speaking Muslims from the province of Xinjiang, a province in the far west of China. The group is against China’s alleged control of their religion and culture.

    The police is also said to be looking for four vehicles which have plates coming from Xinjiang.

    Hernandez, for his part, did not comment on the allegations that it may not be an accident. He said speculations won’t be helpful.

    “Let us await the result of the investigation.”

    The Tiananmen square is the site of the 1989 pro-democracy protests in Beijing that were largely curtailed by the Chinese government. The seven-week protest, led by university students, ended on June 4 when assault troops with rifles and tanks turned the square into a bloodbath.

    The Chinese government prohibits any forms of discussion or remembrance of the massacre. Official figure of the death toll remained unconfirmed, with some saying it ranges from several hundreds to thousands.  BERNICE CAMILLE V. BAUZON

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