Criminal violence perpetrated by massed gangs of African invaders in Paris and Marseilles is driving foreign tourists away from France, with the number of Chinese tourists dropping by over half a million in one year, it has emerged.
According to a report in the French newspaper Le Parisien, the President of the Chinese Association of Travel Agencies in France, Jean-François Zhou, said that 2016 had been a “very bad year” for tourists from his country in France.
Zhou, who is also general manager of a travel agency and official representative of the Chinese tourist association Utour in France, said that “the scourge of criminality is especially aimed at Chinese tourists.”
“They are robbed at the palace of Versailles, at the foot of the Eiffel Tower, in front of their hotels, on the steps of buses . . . during high season, there is not a day that goes by without tourists being assaulted,” Zhou continued.
“I saw an 80-year-old man seriously injured because he was trying to resist the thieves. Women are pushed over, and as they fall, their bags are stolen.”
Zhou said the level of crime had created a “panic on Chinese social networks,” and that these reports had started to deter Chinese tourists since last year.
He explained that in 2016, about 1.6 million Chinese tourists came to Paris. This was a huge drop compared to 2015, when 2.2 million visited.
It is not only the Chinese who have stopped coming, but also the Japanese and Koreans, he added, pointing out that tourism from Japan had dropped 39 percent, and from Korea by 27 percent.
“Our tourists are now going to Russia, which is less attractive but is at least a safe country,” Zhou continued.
Zhou said that recent police measures to protect tourists had not produced any significant results because the problem is that “the police are not supported by the justice system. Often these offenders are released within a few hours, or the sentence is not proportionate.
“So there is a general feeling of insecurity among Chinese, Japanese, and Korean tourists, who are all targets of this criminality in Paris and Marseilles.”
He added that if France wants to stop the exodus and get more Asian tourists, the country needs to “take the necessary measures to protect this market and the image of France.”
Zhou told Le Parisien that the police reinforcements which had been deployed to protect tourists have now been “mobilized elsewhere,” and that France had to stop being “lax” about the problem.
“I have been in France for twenty-five years, and I myself have observed the security decline in France. Before, the Chinese operators deplored the insecurity in Italy, but today it is France. Paris is ranked number one in terms of the upsurge in criminality.”
The criminals Zhou refers to are the masses of Africans who have poured into Paris. Most are fake refugees or other illegal immigrants, and their favorite form of cover for the crime wave being perpetrated against tourists is to pose as souvenir vendors at the major tourist attractions.
Around the Eiffel Tower, for example, there are typically several hundred Africans, all trying to sell cheap Eiffel Towers and other—ironically—Chinese made items and toys. While distracting their victims, they or their accomplices often carry out robberies and other crimes on the unsuspecting tourists.
Only a short while ago, these “street vendors” were filmed attacking a policeman who tried to intervene in one of their criminal activities outside the Tuileries Palace, near the famous Place de la Concorde.
The level of violence and brutality in that particular attack, illustrates well the sort of problem now facing Paris: