Aquino joins world leaders to express shock, horror, sorrow


President Benigno Aquino III. AFP FILE PHOTO

President Benigno Aquino III on Saturday joined world leaders in expressed shock and horror after a gunman massacred 20 small children and six teachers on Friday in the US state of Connecticut, in one of the worst school shootings in history.

At least 28 people, including 20 children, were killed when a man armed with sophisticated handguns walked into Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and opened fire on anyone in sight, in yet another public shooting that has left the world shocked and calling for stricter gun-control laws.

“At this time of the deepest mourning over the tragic loss of life in Connecticut, I extend the deepest sympathy and solidarity to the families of those who lost loved ones in Sandy Hook Elementary School,” President Aquino said in a televised statement.

“Together with the entire Filipino people, we stand beside you with bowed heads, yet in deep admiration [for] the manner [by] which the American people have reached out to comfort the afflicted, and to search for answers that will give meaning and hope to this grim event,” Mr. Aquino said.

“We pray for healing, and that this heartbreak will never be visited on any community ever again,” he said.

No Filipino victims

The Philippine Embassy in the United States was trying to find out if some people of Filipino descent were among the slain or injured in the shooting.

In a statement from the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA), Ambassador to the United States Jose Cuisia Jr. said the Philippine Consulate General in New York was accounting for Filipinos and Filipino-Americans who lived in the Connecticut area.

“From what we know, there are no elementary-aged Filipinos or Filipino-Americans going to Sandy Hook Elementary School,” Cuisia said.

“Those of school age either go to other elementary schools or are in middle school, high school or college,” Cuisia said, citing an early report from the New York consulate.

The information indicates that 16,402 Filipinos or Filipino-Americans live in Connecticut. One hundred Filipino or Filipino-American families live in Danbury, a town 15 minutes away from Newtown. Seven Filipino or Filipino-American families live in Newtown.

Cuisia said most of the Filipinos in Newtown were nurses, doctors and engineers. No Filipinos in Newtown are known to be teachers, he said.

“Just the same we want to be sure that all the Filipinos and Filipino-Americans in Newtown are safe,” Cuisia said.

The Philippine Embassy expressed its sympathy to the United States for the tragedy.

“We join the government of the United States and the American people in mourning the loss of so many innocent lives,” Cuisia said.

“Our hearts go to the families of those who lost loved ones in this tragedy,” he said.

United Nations chief Ban Ki-moon wrote to Connecticut Gov. Dan Malloy to give his “deepest condolences at the shocking murders,” a statement said.

“The targeting of children is heinous and unthinkable,” he added in condemning the “horrendous” crime.

European Union diplomacy chief Catherine Ashton expressed “shock” at the “tragic shooting.”

The head of the European Commission Jose Manuel Barroso spoke of his “deep shock and horror” upon hearing of the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary School, which he called a “terrible tragedy.”

“The news is just awful. The thoughts and prayers of Canadians are with the students and families in [Connecticut] affected by this senseless violence,” Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper wrote on his Twitter account.

“I was shocked and deeply saddened to hear about today’s horrific shooting,” British Prime Minister David Cameron said.

“My thoughts are with the injured and those who have lost loved ones. It is heartbreaking to think of those who have had their children robbed from them at such a young age, when they had so much life ahead of them.”

Britain’s Queen Elizabeth II sent a message to President Barack Obama in which she said she was “deeply shocked and saddened” to hear of the shootings.

French President Francois Hollande also extended his condolences to the victims and their relatives in a message to Obama.

“This news … horrified me and I wish to express my deep shock and consternation,” Hollande said.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard said “Australia grieves with America today following the mass shooting of primary school children and teachers in Connecticut.

“Like President Obama and his fellow Americans, our hearts too are broken.” Gillard said. With reports from Michael Lim Uban and AFP

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  • spitfire

    Adam Lanza was found to have been suffering from Asperger’s Sydrome – a high performing form of Autism. Now, the world knows how dangerous and autistic can be.

    • kanoy

       wrong…first its a personality disorder. second no doctor has examined him and pronounced Asperger’s syndrome as his professional diagnosis ”reports have suggested OFFICIALS & FRIENDS (not doctors) revealed Adam MIGHT HAVE suffered from Asperger’s syndrome OR some other
      personality disorder

      third he is far removed from your average autistic child, unlike average autism if he did not tell you or you did not know him well you never would have known he was autistic you would think him to be your everyday intelligent Goth freak.. Asperger’s syndrome, which is considered a HIGH FUNCTIONING form of autism.

      • Juanlatigo-olbulatego

        dear kanoy,
        i admire your belief and trust in the spirit of freedom and the constitution. theres nothing wrong with choosing what you believe is right with respect to the security of you and your family. but for decades, america has been plagued with countless massacres perpetrated by unqualified gun owners if not very young individuals from comlumbine to sandy. its obvious that the personalities and characters of the gunmen/s were the things to blame the most. but the way how these sad people were guided by their parents plays a vital role on them too. yet, it is wrong to limit the blame away from your government and gun regulations. a knife, machete or cross-bow may be treated as weapons, but modern automatic guns & rifles which can inflict fatal damages to victims instantly with just a mere squeeze of an easy trigger is beyond your ordinary deadly weapon. these high caliber devices are issued to soldiers in the battlefield and not to strangers with unverified moral backgrounds. the 2nd amendment may stay, but strict & meaningful gun control must be strengthened more than ever. may you find peace  as always.

      • kanoy

         let me put this short and sweet because i can tell from your post that you never served your country, we serve our country to protect our constitution that all of our citizens have certain unalienable rights under and as a Vietnam era serviceman i can say that i do not agree with every amendment of our constitution but i would gladly and willingly put my life on the line so that those citizens of my country who do wish to use those same amendments can
        unlike the RP who rewrote its constitution 4 times and now wants to go Parlimentary style we have had the same constitution 236 years and for good reason…our forefathers,,,especially Jefferson had it right in the first place and if it aint broke don’t mess with it the RP has strict gun laws but per capita the murder rate compared to the USA is equal….i could buy a dozen guns here tomorrow from an AK-47 to a .38 i could go to the USA and do the same thing only difference being they are far cheaper here but thats it…gun laws are useless

      • Walaparintatalosaalaska


      • kanoy

        laparintatalosaalaska wrote, kanoy: in the RP young individuals dont blow their
        classmates faces to smithereens LOL at least not that you will ever admit
        An elementary school teacher was shot dead Friday by still unidentified suspects inside her classroom in Masbate
        Two high school students were killed and three others wounded in a drive-by shooting in Cotabato City
        A district custodian of the Division of City Schools in Caloocan was killed by a still unidentified gunman on Wednesday.
        He was the third Caloocan City educator to be killed
        ambush-shooting near a school in Pasay City on Friday
        Two students of the Far Eastern University (FEU) were killed after they
        were shot by still unidentified men near the school campu in Manila
        A man wielding a machete and spear attacked a Sunday school class this
        week in North Sumatra, killing three children aged three and four and
        severely injuring three others from the ages of five to 10

      • Juanlatigo-olbulatego

        thank you for pointing out my lack of courage to serve my country. youll have to forgive me for that. yet regardless of my country’s bad politics, in the RP young individuals dont blow their classmates faces to smithereens nor lonely people ever going to school doing head-shots execution style with helpless 7-yr olds. these gruesome massacres only happen by the scores in the US. this is due to mental illness, bad parenting and more so by poor gun control in the society. it doesnt take a jefferson or a lincoln to see the big hole in americas gun ownership, background checking and regulations problem. also, being a serviceman you should know better that high caliber automatic weapons must only be on the hands of sane and responsible persons like you and not with those sad people who might abuse the 2nd amendment and take innocent lives in the process. honestly, your nation is not asking you to put your life on the line – no, its not the lives of innocent civilians which the society is asking for, rather its the thirst for gun violence and irresponsible gun ownership that people should willingly put aside. and in so doing protect more citizens in your country who wish to use the soul basic amendment of your constitution (free of violence) – the right to live. may you find peace in your heart.

      • kanoy

        I see your rocket ship left earth,,,,again…as you swear the first amendment of the US constitution is>>>the first and basic amendment of your constitution (free of violence) >> lord have mercy you would FAIL the US citizenship exam and probably be immediately deported with that answer which is no where even remotely close to the correct one which is the right to freedom of religion and freedom of expression NOT ”FREEDOM OF VIOLENCE” bbwwaahahaha

  • Eddie AAA Calderon

    We just hope that US politicians will be serious in discussing gun control. Otherwise there will be again an encore on this tragedy.

    • kanoy

       its not about ”gun control” its about ”people control” guns don’t kill people….people kill people…the USA could have the same stupid gun control act as we do….go ask AMPATUAN just how well that works….the 2nd amendment protects the American people against its government assuring them of no AQUINO ARROYO MARCOS HITLER HUSSAIN ruling them that was Tom Jeffersons fear, foresight and intent when drafting it in 1781

    • kanoy

       NEVER! Marcos would not have been assassinated in the USA….the RP has strict gun laws and shootings, killings, mass murders are still abundant,,,,so what good are they…none,,,disarm the people disarm their freedom…tell it Tom….”For a people who are free, and who mean to remain so,a well organized and armed militia is their best security.” Mike what have you to say? A well organized militia from a well armed private populous is a threat
      to tyranny, no matter the menacing actors, foreign or domestic
      right but the RP restricts guns…Family shot in Binondo; 1 dead A
      politician in the Philippines who was shot dead while taking a
      photograph of his family on New Year’s Day captured his killer on camera
      just seconds before the assassin fired the fatal shots.

  • kilabot

    sad, so sad for the loss of innocent lives. 
    connecticut is a state that supports perversion. 
    with perversion rampant and legal in that state, perhaps it was blessing in disguise for children to die and not corrupted with perversion. 

    • kanoy

       if you call gay marriage supporting perversion so evil will befall them then the POPE & HIS POPETTES along with the entire Catholic faith that allows it to continue are all going to hell for protecting supporting and paying hush money to cover up thousands of pedophile priests….you can not condemn homosexuals in the community while supporting them in the church plain and simple thats hypocritical as the saying goes walang lumura sa langit na di sa
      kanyang mukha nagbalik….clean up your own back yard before you go $hitting in others

  • Jaelsimone

     What happened in fact my comment ?

  • Albert Einstien

    TRAGIC….they should not issue gun license to people who sick in his mind….!

    POLITICIANS soo much HYPOCRISY…..adds insult ……KAPAL-LASTIKAN…..certified as URGENT bill nga ang RH…hundred of millions ng FUTURE filipinos yung gusto ng RH  na-IGENOCIDE…..tapos kunyari nagdadalamhati si pnoy sa 28 US citzens…..KAPAL-LASTIKAN talaga ng HUWAD na DAAN…. grabe!

  • kanoy

     TRAGIC….they should not issue KNIFE license to people who sick in his mind….!

    We just hope that CHINA politicians will be serious in discussing KNIFE control.
    Knife attack at Chinese school wounds 22 children

  • Peter L

    American values are fast deteriorating. It is just the start of living in a society where Bible is not allowed to be read nor a prayer to be heard in public. The world leaders are in shock because they have tolerated their citizens to live a life apart from the Holy Word of God. America is a Christian country without Christ! 

  • disqusted0fu

    Love your own, president Aquino. care about the lives of the Filipino people first before anything else.

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