China’s Consul General to the Philippines in Cebu, Song Ronghua, was wounded and two of his staff members were killed in a shooting that took place this afternoon at a restaurant in the Philippines.
Tencent reports that the shooting occurred at a downtown Cebu restaurant called the Lighthouse Restaurant with gunshots reported at around 1:32 p.m. this afternoon. There were 9 people eating lunch inside the restaurant during the time of the shooting.
Song has been taken to a hospital for treatment. The two diplomats killed in the shooting have been confirmed as Song’s consular staff. Their names have been released as Li Hui and Shen Sun.
According to Tencent, Cebu police have detained one female suspect in relation to the shootings.
The staff at the Chinese Embassy in the Philippines has expressed their dismay at the tragic news and are attempting to verify more information about the incident.
We will update as more information becomes available.
UPDATE, 2:00 AM: More details have emerged about the bizarre shooting.
According to Reuters, the shooter was the Chinese husband of a Chinese woman working at a Chinese consulate in the Philippines. He shot and killed Shen Sun, the deputy consul general, and Li Hui, another senior staff member and wounded Song Ronghua, consul general, at a birthday lunch at a downtown restaurant.
Waiters at the Lighthouse Restaurant told police that they heard shouts from a private room in the restaurant, but could not understand what the argument was about. Then, gunshots rang out.
The suspect, Li Qingliang, was arrested and his wife, Guo Jing, who works in the visa section of the consul, has been held for questioning. Police determined that Li was the shooter after checking security footage from the restaurant.
“The gunman just stood up and shot the two people to his right, and then he shot the person right across from him,” a police spokesman said. The police recovered a .45-caliber pistol from the restaurant.
The motive for the shooting has not yet been learned, but it is assumed to be personal.
Meanwhile, police said that the suspect and his wife had invoked diplomatic immunity after they were found at the consulate and taken in for questioning.
Consul General Song Ronghua currently remains in stable condition at a local hospital.
[Images via Tencent]