Missile-target Guam tapping on publicity to boost tourism

This article is more than 12 months old

HAGATNA, GUAM:  Tourism-dependent Guam is looking to cash in on its new-found fame as a North Korean missile target, tapping an unlikely promotional opportunity to attract visitors to the idyllic island and prove that all publicity is good publicity.

Pyongyang's threats to launch four missile strikes near the United States territory has stirred global curiosity in the remote Pacific destination, with it trending heavily on search engines as social media users asked: "What is Guam?"

Although Guam hosts two US military installations and 6,000 US soldiers, making it the target of North Korea's wrath, tourism authorities are keen to dispel any impression of danger to the tranquil island and its beaches.

"The circumstances are unfortunate, but this is a good opportunity for us to educate the world about Guam and our culture, about where we are and who we are," said Mr Josh Tyquiengco, marketing director at Guam Visitors Bureau.

"Guam is more than a military base. We are a safe family destination. We reassure potential visitors that we continue to be a safe place to visit."

Governor Eddie Calvo said any attack on Guam "would be met with overwhelming force", pointing out that the biggest threat facing the island was the looming typhoon season.

"Everybody should conduct their lives like business as usual. Go out, have a good time, enjoy the beaches." - AFP

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