• Tue
  • Dec 23, 2014
  • Updated: 4:42am

Nanjing teenager exposed as perpetrator of Temple of Luxor graffiti attack

Tourist from Nanjing carried out graffiti attack in Temple of Luxor, his parents confirm

PUBLISHED : Monday, 27 May, 2013, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 28 May, 2013, 8:32am

A mainland tourist who defaced a sculpture at a 3,500-year-old Egyptian temple has been identified as a teenager from Nanjing, his embarrassed parents confirmed yesterday.

He had written "Ding Jinhao was here" on the artwork some years ago during a visit to the Temple of Luxor, the parents said in an apologetic interview with Nanjing's Modern Express newspaper on Saturday.

Ding's graffiti caused an online stir this week when a microblogger posted a photo of the message, citing it as an example of shameful behaviour by mainland tourists abroad. The post attracted a torrent of replies, including suggestions that the perpetrator be tracked down.

Some disclosed personal information about Ding, including his age and school, after searching his records online.

The website of his former primary school in Nanjing was attacked yesterday. It showed the same message that Ding had left in Egypt, and visitors to the site had to click the message before they could open the homepage.

Ding's parents told the Modern Express that it was their lack of education and supervision that led to his mischief.

They said the attack happened when their son, now in middle school, was little. They were with a tourist group and did not notice when he scrawled on the sculpture, the mother said.

"We have taken him sightseeing since he was little, and we often saw such graffiti. But we didn't realise we should have told him that this is wrong," she said. The mother also implored internet users not to hound her son.

Mainlanders are today the biggest drivers of global tourism, but their sheer numbers and a perception that they can be insensitive travellers have strained their reputation.

At a conference earlier this month to implement the newly passed Tourism Law, vice premier Wang Yang said some mainland tourists behaved poorly and hurt the nation's image.

The law, to come into force in October, says that tourists should "cherish tourist resources and abide by social morality while sightseeing," although it mentions no offences or penalties.

Mainland tourists made some 82 million international visits last year, according to the China Tourism Academy.


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This article is now closed to comments

I don't agree with what you say, I am Canadian and each time I hear one of my fellow country men does something bad abroad I feel ashamed. I most of the time, to be honest, then look up if he is naturalized or born in Canada and if he or she is born in Canada I feel double ashamed. That's call nationality pride! I care about the image of my country and the image its citizens gives abroad.
---Thirdly is the response. Apparently Chinese folk got so angry on the internet that the HUNTED the kid down...
"The post prompted an online search which revealed Ding's identity, his date of birth and his primary school."
.---WTF is wrong with these people? They are so angry that they, like a pack of vultures, hunt down a kid's DOB and his school? All for being a rebellious kid???? Then the collectivist comments they make:
"Ding's uncivilized behavior disgraced Chinese people." THERE WERE EVEN DEATH THREATS.
"People must die if they lose face for the nation," another said.
---You bunch of idiots. You are honestly calling for a kid grafitting to DIE????
"It's a disgrace to our entire race!" said another angry micro-blogger.
---You don't speak for me, loser.
You should be arrested. First - he is not representing Chinese people, he is representing himself, maybe his family. Actually scrap that. He's representing no-one. HE'S JUST A CHILD.
Second - you PHYSICALLY ASSAULTED A MINOR BY THE NECK AND THREW HIM.... for what? Him pranking you with the line thing? Kids do that all the time. I was queuing up at the post office the other day, I let them have their fun. THEY'RE KIDS.
If I was the boy's parent in your scenario, I would kill you.
Sure they are kids, that doesn't mean they could behave as they like.
Of course it's over the top to "hunt the kid down" but at the same time what do you think is a proper response? If a kid killed another kid, will you still be talking about, "they're kids - let them have their fun". Somewhere parents and adults in the society have to draw the line with kids and we have to be clear about what behaviour is acceptable and what is not.
And after unacceptable behaviour we have do respond strongly enough so that the kid understands this is not be done ever again. If that then means telling him, "don't do that again" or put him in the psych-ward for 2 years, well that depends on how extreme the behaviour was. I guess this type of behaviour ranks somewhere in between.
It certainly isn't the first and won't be the last act of vandalism by a tourist (of any race). Then there's is also the large scale vandalism and/or theft of ancient artifacts for profit and simply just for collection. There are a quite number of ancient artifacts (both large and small) that are displayed in museums now thousands of miles away from their place of origin.
What is news here this is probably the first tourist act of vandalism exposed through social media.
It is also a sad reflection in desperation for the tourist revenue that such venues are open with little or no regard for protection.
Holy hell! People like this have no respect to cultural heritages like this. They even write something on walls which are roughly 5000 years old here in Turkey!
Ignorant, irresponsible, and outright stupid tourists, and vandals certainly are not only from China. This has been and will be an issue whenever a nation 'begins to travel', and hordes of people that have never been outside their country descend on others. Remember Southern Spain in the Seventies? Do you admire the Buddha head "souvenir" your distinguished dinner host brags about when he comes back from Cambodia? What is needed in first place are local laws protecting cultural sites followed by rigorous enforcement. But it won't hurt if this case is making a lot of headlines!
like your idea
But somehow I tend to think that the kid's parents ARE (with) the government. If they aren't party members, they at least have very tight links to them. Just like many, many, if not the vast majority of the misbehaving Mainland Chinese tourists are...
People dying in Iraq, Afghanistan, Egypt and many other places.,but all people care about is Chinese tourists. Be honest if people did not just berate them so much and just provided guidance with notices etc.
I was watng to board a train at admarity. I was standing to close to the door. The attendant asked me to stand back very nicely. She then went over to someone I believe was a mainlanders and started yelling to get him to move back.
That was my ahhah moment when I realised there is a double standard of treatment in HK.
It's ironic... what Bruce Lee did to project Chinese soft power over the last few decades... Ding Jinhao extinguished with a few strokes.



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