Filipino worker praises shot Taiwanese fisherman

Staff writer, with CNA

Sat, May 25, 2013 - Page 4

A Taiwanese fisherman who was killed by Philippine Coast Guard personnel on May 9 treated Filipinos working in Pingtung County like “his children,” a Filipino worker told the Philippine Daily Inquirer in a report published yesterday.

Antonio Dimacali Manasa, who works in Pingtung County’s Liouciou Township (琉球), was speaking of 65-year-old Hung Shih-cheng (洪石成), who died when a Philippine patrol strafed his family’s fishing boat in waters where the two countries’ economic zones overlap, triggering a diplomatic firestorm.

“I knew him. He was good to the Filipino fishermen here and he treated us like his children,” Manasa was quoted as saying in the report.

Other Filipino workers in Taiwan told the Inquirer that they were safe and did not feel threatened by local residents, although they still remained cautious and avoiding going out at night, the report said.

Meanwhile, in another report in the Manila Bulletin, Hung’s wife, Hung Chen A-lun (洪陳阿崙), said she was considering suing the officers who shot her husband because she did not feel it was an “unintended” loss of life as the Philippines has claimed.

The widow demanded that the Philippine government issue a public apology and negotiate fishing rights with Taiwan.

Hung’s family also refused on Wednesday to accept a NT$2.5 million (US$83,600) donation from the overseas Chinese community in the Philippines to help fix the family’s bullet-ridden fishing boat, which suffered about NT$8 million in damage.

The family insisted that it would only accept compensation from the Philippine government.

Philippine media workers have flocked into Taiwan since Thursday to cover the story after having mostly followed it in their home country since the attack occurred.