China urges Paris store boycott
China warned its citizens against shopping at a leading Paris department store that wrongly accused a young Chinese couple of trying to pay with a fake banknote
BEIJING, Feb 25, 2008 - China on Saturday warned its citizens against
shopping at a leading Paris department store that wrongly accused a young
Chinese couple of trying to pay with a fake banknote, state media said.
Staff at the French capital's Galeries Lafayette dragged the two newlyweds
off to a police station earlier this month after making the false accusation,
the Xinhua news agency said.
The head of the store on Friday apologised for the incident, but Xinhua
quoted an unnamed tourism official calling for a boycott of the famed French
Chinese media also said the country's consulate in France had contacted the
police to protest the "brutal" treatment of the couple.
Police officials in France said Saturday that officers intervened in the
case at the request of store management.
The couple were taken to the police station to verify the banknote, with an
infrared scan needed because of the poor condition of the paper, police said,
adding that no incident occurred during the operation.
China's growing middle class is enjoying more and more foreign travel, and
Paris is a favourite destination for newly married couples.
Chinese tourists are the store's highest-spending foreign customers.