De Lima: Hostage-taker wanted to air grievances

Ex-Sen. Leila de Lima on 9 October said she considers the hostage-talking incident in her detention cell at Camp Crame a “near-death” experience.

In a statement, she narrated what exactly transpired, saying her hostage-taker, a co-detainee, took action since they wanted to air their grievances:

“I am grateful to all who expressed concern for my well-being in the aftermath of the surreal hostage-taking incident that happened this Sunday morning.

“I have already endured more than five years of unjust detention inside the PNP Custodial Center. It was therefore farthest from my mind that on top of this ordeal, I also had to survive the knife of a fellow detainee (reportedly an Abu Sayyaf member) who took me hostage in a desperate attempt to make known their grievances to the public.

“After being told by the hostage-taker that since his two other companions were already dead, he might just as well also kill me, I consider what happened to me as a near-death experience. If not for the timely intervention of the PNP security force, I don’t think I would have come out alive since the hostage-taker was already determined to die and take me with him.

“I am now safe and sound except for the lingering pain on my chest where the hostage-taker pressed the point of his knife while holding me hostage. Please also pray for the injured police officer who, like me, was the other but more unfortunate victim of this incident. While I have survived with only a knife mark and some considerable distress, he is still fighting for his life. Let us all pray for his quick recovery.

“While I am still trying to recover psychologically and emotionally from this harrowing experience, I am sure of one thing that I learned from it. Being so near death has only made me value life even more.

“Thank you for all your prayers. Most of all, I thank the Lord for being by my side during those terrible moments, and for saving my life today.”

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