Social media users in China are expressing outrage at a young Chinese tourist who was reported to have been identified after having scribbled his name into an ancient Egyptian monument.
Chinese state media say an Internet user last week tracked down the 15-year-old boy, who wrote “Ding Jinhao was here” in Mandarin on a 3,500-year-old tablet at Egypt’s Temple of Luxor. Egyptian authorities this week removed the graffiti from the monument.
The Global Times newspaper says the image of the defaced monument has been shared over 90,000 times on Chinese social media and triggered public outrage from embarrassed Chinese citizens.
The boy’s parents, who say the monument was defaced a few years ago, have apologized. They say their son is concerned about the attention being given to his actions, especially because Chinese hackers defaced his school’s Web site with a message making fun of him.
The story has raised the issue of embarrassing behavior of Chinese tourists abroad. Monday, a Chinese foreign ministry spokesperson urged Chinese citizens to behave themselves overseas and abide by local laws and regulations.
Earlier this month, Vice Premier Wang Yang said certain tourists’ uncivilized behavior, such as talking loudly, jay-walking, spitting, and graffiti, were harming China’s image.
The number of Chinese tourists traveling overseas has expanded rapidly in recent years. The United Nations World Tourism Organization says Chinese travelers are now the biggest source of international tourism cash in the world.