We are afraid: Koreans pray for Jee at Camp Crame


Posted at Jan 26 2017 05:17 PM

Video by Henry Atuelan, DZMM

With the absence of a body to lay to rest, slain South Korean businessman Ick-joo Jee's countrymen offered prayers at the scene of his death in Camp Crame. 

Officials of the United Korean Community Association in the Philippines (UKCAP) also left flowers at the site to mark his passing.

Charlie Shin, executive vice president of the UKCAP, said that while they are "very much worried," they believe that the Philippine government will be able to resolve the issue.

"We are afraid and a little worried. Of course everybody is now very much worried about all this. I believe that the government will soon be able to solve all these problems and protect the Korean nationals," Shin told reporters at Camp Crame.

Jee was allegedly killed by rogue policemen inside the headquarters of the Philippine National Police (PNP) in Quezon City after he was abducted in a supposed anti-illegal drug operation.

His death shocked the Korean community in the Philippines, which the South Korean government estimated to number around 90,000.

In a statement, the Embassy of the Republic of Korea expressed "strong regrets" for the "unfortunate" incident, and called on Philippine officials to "thoroughly conduct the investigation" into Jee's death.

Director General Ronald "Bato" dela Rosa said that the killing, done in the same compound as the PNP chief's official residence, made him want to "disappear from this world because of so much shame."

On Tuesday, Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella apologized to the Korean government and the public in behalf of the administration for Jee's death.

"We wish to take this occasion to express the condolences and sympathies of President Rodrigo Roa Duterte and the Filipino people to Mrs. Choi Hyeung-jin, the widow of Mr. Ick-joo Jee, the South Korean national who met untimely death while in police custody," Abella said at a press briefing. 

He also promised that the government will commit "the full force of law" to ensure that justice is served. 

On Tuesday, SPO3 Ricky Sta. Isabel, the key suspect in Jee's slay, was brought to the Angeles City Trial Court, along with fellow suspect SPO4 Roy Villegas, days after a warrant was issued for their arrest. --with reports from Henry Atuelan, DZMM