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China to reopen Tibet to foreign tourists on April 5

31 Mar, 2009
 

China will reopen Tibet to foreign tourists on April 5, a travel official said Monday.

State news agency Xinhua quoted Tibet's head of tourism, Bachug, as saying that tourist arrivals had been suspended in March "for the sake of travellers' safety" but would resume April 5.

"Tibet is harmonious and safe now," he said, adding that "travel agencies, tourist resorts and hotels are well prepared for tourists."

An official at the tourism administration of Tibet, who did not want to be named, confirmed that Tibet would reopen to foreign tourists from April 5.

"Foreign tourists can go to Tibet but need a confirmation letter from the police," he said.

However, there was some confusion about the planned re-opening among travel agents and others in the industry contacted by AFP.

"Foreign tourists can't go to Tibet until April 28th, that's from a notice from the Sichuan Travel Administration," said an employee at the Chengdu China Travel Service agency in southwest China, which does Tibet tours.

"Foreign tourists need to apply for permission to enter Tibet, and they can't go with a Chinese group."

A worker at a downtown Lhasa hostel was also unaware of the official date, saying he had heard the city would reopen to foreigners on April 14.

 
 
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