Korean shot dead in siege at Philippine coffee shop

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Korean shot dead in siege at Philippine coffee shop

A middle-aged Korean woman was shot dead by a gunman in a coffee shop in the Philippines on Monday afternoon, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Seoul.

Filipino media reported that the 45-year-old, surnamed Park, was shot at around 1:25 p.m. Monday after she entered a coffee shop in Quezon City, a technology and culture hub in Manila.

Her death brings the number of Korean nationals killed in the Philippines since the beginning of the year to four.

Local police said that Park entered the shop without knowing that it had been seized by an armed intruder. When the gunman attempted to take her cell phone, she resisted and was subsequently shot.

Authorities added that the robber had tied up two coffee shop employees and a customer and had already been in the process of plundering the store over an hour when Park walked in.

The gunman fled the scene after shooting her.

Police are still tracking the assailant, whose identity remains unconfirmed, and have drawn up a composite picture based on testimony from the store’s employees.

In January, a Korean businessman was killed in Luzon, the country’s most populous island. And in a separate case in Luzon earlier that month, a man shot his younger brother during an argument.

On Jan. 26, a group of four Korean men who were kidnapped and held hostage for four days were released by their captors after a partial ransom was paid.

In 2010, the Philippine National Police established a Korean Desk to handle crimes involving Korean nationals.

According to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, 10 Koreans were killed in the Philippines last year, and 13 in 2013.

BY SARAH KIM [sarahkim@joongang.co.kr]

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