Palace confirms Almendras in HK with Erap

by RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 23 2014 05:26 PM | Updated as of Apr 24 2014 01:26 AM

MANILA - Cabinet Secretary Rene Almendras left for Hong Kong after all.

Communication Secretary Herminio Coloma Jr. could not give details on the trip, however.

"Wala akong kongkretong impormasyon hinggil sa itinerary ni Secretary Almendras. Ang batid ko lang at batid din natin, siya ang inatasan ng ating Pangulo na maging point person sa bagay na ito, at ang ating nais ay makatamo tayo ng mutually satisfactory conclusion.”

Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada is in Hong Kong to formally apologize for the bungled police operations in the Manila hostage taking crisis in 2010, which left 8 Hong Kong tourists dead.

Estrada had said Almendras will be accompanying him.

On Tuesday, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda denied the trip. Almendras himself was evasive on the matter.

Coloma said the country can only hope for closure to stem any more sanctions from Hong Kong.

“We are hopeful that the initiatives of Mayor Estrada will contribute to the national government’s efforts in achieving closure and a mutually satisfactory conclusion,” he said.

President Aquino earlier refused to apologize for the incident.