Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Boy aged 16 travels from China to Dubai after hiding in huge Emirates plane's cargo hold

An Emirates A380
A teenager hid on an Emirates A380 for nine hours in search of a better income

A teenager who stowed away on an Airbus passenger jet flying from China to Dubai intended to start a new life as a 'professional beggar'.

The 16-year-old lad named as Xu managed to board and hide in the cargo hold of the huge Emirates A380 plane in Shanghai - and remain undetected for the entire nine hour journey.

He was only discovered when he reached his destination and was arrested by Dubai cops.
China's state-owned Xinhua News Agency reported that a translator appointed by prosecutors said that the teen had jumped over a fence at Shanghai airport and climbed into the cargo hold while a security guard's back was turned.

His story has sparked debate in China over misinformation in the media - as Xu is believed he read on social media that beggars in Dubai could make 470,000 yuan (£4,900) a month.

In April China Daily reported on a Gulf News story of the arrest of a 'professional beggar' making 270,000 dirhams (£51,000) a year. The average yearly wage in China in 2012 was 28,752 yuan (about £3,287).
Getty Conveyor belt by airplane cargo hold
The teenager got into the cargo hold when a security guard looked away

Around the same time a hashtag on a Twitter-like website called Sina Weibo - one of the most popular social media sites in China - then went viral saying: #DubaiBeggarsMake470000YuanMonthly.
People in China started posting saying things like "prepared to go begging in Dubai" - and flight tickets with the caption "Do not stop me going".
After the story broke online in China yesterday the hashtag started trending again.

Some users praised Xu for his bravery and ambition - others condemned the media for spreading 'false' rumours about the riches Dubai had to offer.
View of modern high-rise skyline of Dubai from Jumeirah Open Beach in Dubai
Beggars can earn a small fortune in the oil-rich city of Dubai

The translator confirmed that the teen had “risked his life sneaking into Dubai because he heard an online rumour that even beggars in the city can earn several hundred thousand yuan a month.
"The cargo compartment of the plane was very comfortable, although he did not eat anything during the nine-hour flight”.

The translator added that Xu, from Bazhong in the Sichuan province, had accepted his arrest because he'd heard that Dubai prisoners were “treated very well”.
The Chinese consulate in Dubai has sent staff members to meet with him.
The double-deck Airbus A380 is the world's largest passenger jet airliner and the airports it operates from have upgraded facilities to handle it.
A statement by the airline said: “Emirates can confirm that on May 27, a stowaway was found in the cargo hold of flight EK303 from Shanghai to Dubai."

Credit: Mirror UK

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