5-speed listening (Level 2)

Tourist deported for Buddha tattoo






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A British tourist must leave Sri Lanka for having a Buddha tattoo on her arm. Naomi Coleman, 37, was arrested at Sri Lanka's international airport. She is waiting at a centre in the airport for a flight back to the U.K. Officials told her that the tattoo disrespected Sri Lankan culture. A police spokesman said the tattoo hurt "others' religious feelings". Most Sri Lankans are Buddhist and respect images and statues of Buddha. They would think anyone with a Buddha tattoo is culturally insensitive. Coleman said she practised Buddhism and did not think her tattoo was bad.

Tourists have got in trouble before for not understanding Sri Lankan culture. A Briton got deported last year for speaking disrespectfully to passport officials. The BBC said three French tourists got prison sentences for kissing a Buddha statue. A British newspaper reports that in 2010, R&B star Akon could not get a visa to visit Sri Lanka because of a video for his song Sexy Chick. The video showed a pool party in front of a statue of Buddha. A British website warns people who visit Sri Lanka not to pose for photos in front of statues of the Buddha.

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