Following news that the British, American, French, and Australian embassies are warning about possible attacks on Westerners in Beijing, YPT would like to give our own advice and take on things, particularly for those of our guests traveling on a tour to North Korea via Beijing with YPT.
Now as a company that specializes in taking people to places your mother would rather you stayed away from, we are certainly not going to scare-monger about Beijing, which by and large is a safe place to visit, or live, that is not to say it is safe all the time. The source of the threat has not been announced, but that it is specifically aimed at foreigners in Sanlitun bar district should be kept in mind.
Whilst not often reported by mainstream media, racially motivated attacks on foreigners have become much more of a thing over the last 5 years. Usually following the classic racial element that rears its ugly head in many countries, that of perceived riches of foreigners; that it has been stolen from the local population, or hatred based around interracial relationships. That France have issued a warning is quite telling. Only this year a French citizen and his Chinese wife were returning from getting married through Sanlitun, when a man wielding a large sword killed the woman and seriously injured the man. For whatever reason, incidents of this type are hardly mentioned in both the Chinese and Western press.
This certainly does not mean that we suggest you avoid China, Beijing, or even Sanlitun. But as we do with any of the destinations we take our guests, to we believe it to be incredibly important to be upfront about potential dangers and annoyances, so that all Pioneers can decide on the best course of action by themselves.