BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Languages
Last Updated: Thursday, 29 November 2007, 12:03 GMT
Eyewitness: Manila coup bid
Philippine army troops arrive outside the Peninsula Hotel in Manila on 29 November 2007
Hundreds of troops had surrounded the hotel
A coup bid by renegade soldiers in a Manila hotel has ended after they surrendered following an assault on the building by Philippine troops.

We spoke to people in the area, who contacted the BBC News website, and asked them to describe the events of the day.

YAS HARRAZ, TRAINER

I was on the top floor of the City Bank Tower, where our offices are. From the morning we were told not to leave the building, so me and my colleagues have been observing everything from the windows.

From around 4pm we started hearing gunshots and saw a tank going towards the hotel. There were many armed soldiers, so it was clear that the situation is serious. In the last few weeks we've had gas explosions, an earthquake, typhoon and now this. People here are used to all kinds of things, but this time everyone seemed worried.

PIERRE TAN, MANILA RESIDENT

We've experienced similar situations already several times. I don't consider it very concerning any more but I think people here are generally worried.

Workers in the Makati area continued with their normal schedules despite the events. People are more concerned about the traffic that they may cause. A lot of people would find it hard to commute to their homes.

I also just heard that the government imposed a midnight to 5 AM curfew tonight. A reason for concern for me as this is the first time the administration has done this.

I believe that the soldiers went too far in sharing their grievances again. These events scare potential investors to our country.

With our country's economic growth now at a record high, these events aren't helpful to us. The government should do something about the soldiers' grievances to prevent these things from happening again and again.

LEONIE ANNING, BRITISH TOURIST

I was nearby, in the mall area, when we were evacuated from a shop and rushed out onto the street. There was big chaos and panic.

We were all stuck there, unable to get a taxi, as the roads were closed. There were many armed soldiers and it was pretty scary, especially when you don't know what's going on. It took a while to escape from the area.

MICHAEL WHITING, BRITISH CHAMBER OF COMMERCE

I think generally people were disappointed about today's events. The economy has been going on really well and things have been so positive here. I think this came as a surprise to people.

My Filipino colleagues seemed pretty apathetic about the situation because most people have grown weary of attempts to overthrow the government.

In the last week we've had a typhoon, followed by an earthquake, followed by this. The country had a lot of issues over the years and I think people become resilient to disasters. While there's sympathy for these guys I think what they did today could backfire and they could lose some of that sympathy.

LINDSAY, ENGLISH TEACHER

We could see the hotel a few blocks away from our high-rise apartment block. Everyday life is going on as usual, and you can't tell that less than 500m away a military stand-off is occurring.

People here are so used to things like that happening, they have seen that kind of thing before, so they are quite complacent. From conversations with local people, there appears to be sympathy for the senator and his followers as the government's alleged corruption is quite notorious here.

CHINNO BRAVO MARQUEZ, MANILA RESIDENT

All our meetings were cancelled today as everyone's eyes were glued to the telly to watch the events unfold. Sadly, Lieutenant Trillanes failed the second chance people gave him when they elected him to the Senate by staging this shameful coup d'etat.

The value of the Philippine peso has risen dramatically against the US dollar and foreign investors have gained confidence in doing business in the Philippines during the administration of Mrs Arroyo.

True, her government doesn't really have a clean slate. But I believe hers is the best we can have at this time when nobody can fill her shoes and claim he can do better.

I do not believe that Lieutenant Trillanes' decision to abandon the attempt was brought about by his fear that civilians might get hurt. We all know why he suddenly dropped the attempt. He saw that the government will take him seriously now and not just take the situation for granted. Surely the tanks and the thousand soldiers scared him.


VIDEO AND AUDIO NEWS
Filipino troops storm hotel



SEE ALSO
Deja vu in Manila siege crisis
29 Nov 07 |  Asia-Pacific
Country profile: The Philippines
25 Oct 07 |  Country profiles
Arroyo on Manila coup bid
29 Nov 07 |  World




FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific