S Korea considers issuing warning against travel to Moscow

17:02, March 08, 2010      

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South Korea is mulling issuing a travel warning against the Russian capital of Moscow following a recent series of hate crimes in Russia that left one South Korean dead and the other seriously injured, the South Korean government said on Monday.

"The government is planning to announce comprehensive measures on tourist safety, including possibly raising alert level against travel (to Moscow)," said Seoul's Foreign Ministry spokesman Kim Young-sun in a briefing, adding that only three areas in Russia, including the conflict-ridden Chechnya, are currently subject to travel restrictions imposed by the government in Seoul.

The move comes after a 29-year-old South Korean student in Moscow, identified only by his last name Shim, was attacked and hospitalized, hardly a month after another South Korean student in the Siberian city of Barnaul was stabbed to death by three Russians.

The South Korean government has since repeatedly requested the Russian authorities to help prevent recurrences, according to the foreign ministry, but has been reluctant to call the incidents the hate crimes.

"It needs a little more investigation before deciding that the crimes were committed by racial supremacists. The government is not ruling out other possibilities,"Kim said, adding South Korean travelers are advised to move in a group and be accompanied by local guides.

Source: Xinhua
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