VIETNAM

David Beckham photo sparks debate about road safety in Vietnam

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Football star David Beckham paid a relatively low-key visit to Vietnam in November, to launch his new scotch whisky brand Haig Club. Yet three days after returning home, he posted a photo of a Vietnamese fan on a motorcycle to his official Facebook account -- and it caused an international stir.

Photo posted on David Beckham's official Facebook page.

The photo, which has amassed almost 700,000 likes on Facebook at the time of writing, shows a woman taking a picture of Beckham as she passes on a motorcycle. The motorcycle itself appears to be in motion, the woman is wearing no helmet, and a small child -- also without a helmet -- is standing by her legs.

Beckham posted the picture with the caption, “I’m all for fans taking a picture but not sure this is the safest way to do it!” Perhaps unintentionally, he sparked a heated discussion about road safety and the enforcement of driving laws in Vietnam, with a range of Facebook comments from users who think her excitement was understandable, to those who are more critical:

The Vietnamese police force has reacted to the widespread attention the photo has received: Colonel Dao Vinh Thang, head of Hanoi Traffic Police Department, has stated that the police will try to find the woman in the photo and “impose a fine to make an example” of her if she is found to have violated traffic rules.