NEWS

Greece must reconsider tourism image, official says

Greece must re-examine its tourism product, Zakynthos Mayor Stelios Bozikis said on Wednesday, as the Ioanian island was still reeling from the murder of a British national earlier in the day.

?We need to ask ourselves what sort of tourists we want,? Bozikis told Skai Television.

A 19-year-old British tourist was stabbed to death and four others wounded following a fight with two local taxi drivers in Lagana, a popular resort with tourists from the UK.

One of the injured had to undergo surgery after being stabbed in the chest and neck. Doctors later said he was out of danger.

The two cabbies have been arrested.

Bozikis criticized the behavior of tourists ?who come [to Lagana] to have fun and do things they would not do in their country.?

?This was an accident waiting to happen,? the mayor said.

The lewd and violent behavior of young British tourists has often become the subject of controversy on Zakythos and at other holiday resorts around Greece.

A group of British women faced prostitution charges in 2008 after taking part in an oral sex competition on the island. A year later, a Greek woman set fire to a drunken British tourist?s penis and testicles in a nightclub on the island of Crete after he allegedly exposed his genitals to a number of women and tried to force her to touch him.

The British government has in the past campaigned to contain the problem.

Bozikis condemned the killing, adding that it is not representative of the local community. He also said the island police force is understaffed and cannot keep up with complaints.

Bozikis said he did not expect the incident to harm tourism on the island.

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