K-pop group RIIZE recently faced a distressing situation at Gimpo International Airport, leaving member Anton visibly shaken and reportedly close to tears. This incident has raised serious concerns among fans about the safety and well-being of the artists, especially in public spaces like airports.
A Troubling Return to Korea
RIIZE, who was in Japan for personal schedules, returned to Korea on December 14. Despite previous rough experiences at airports, fans had hoped that SM Entertainment would enhance security measures to protect the group. However, the latest incident indicates that these concerns have not been adequately addressed.
The Chaotic Scene at the Airport
Upon their arrival, RIIZE was immediately swarmed by fans as they left the enclosed exit area. Photos captured at the scene show Anton surrounded by fans, looking overwhelmed and on the verge of tears. The security and staff struggled to manage the crowd, highlighting the severity of the situation.
Members’ Visible Distress
Anton, known for his soft-spoken nature, was notably distressed by the incident. He was later seen wearing a bucket hat to cover his eyes, with a manager keeping him close. Fellow member Sungchan also appeared worn out, underscoring the stressful nature of their airport exit.
Compounded by Overcrowding
The situation was likely exacerbated by the presence of fans waiting for ZEROBASEONE’s Ricky, whose departure from the airport was similarly chaotic. The increased number of people at the airport contributed to the overwhelming environment for RIIZE.
Not the First Time
This wasn’t the first time the group faced airport mobs. On October 15, after a fan meeting in Osaka, Riize returned to a late-night airport mob. Despite security efforts, the crowd was overwhelming, leading to chaos and even security guards being jostled.
Shota and Anton of Riize nearly had accidents due to aggressive fans while navigating to their vehicles. Onlookers criticized the situation, highlighting the overwhelmed security and potential dangers to both the group and the public. This recurring disorder has sparked demands for legal measures to ensure public order at airports.
Fan Reactions and Calls for Action
Fans of RIIZE, known as BRIIZE, expressed their upset over the incident, emphasizing the need for people to remember that idols are human beings deserving of respect and personal space. The incident has sparked a wave of reactions from netizens, with many calling for stricter security measures and a more respectful approach from fans in public settings.
The persistent mobbing incidents shine a light on the ongoing challenges faced by K-pop idols in maintaining their safety and privacy. It serves as a reminder of the importance of responsible fan behaviour and the need for entertainment companies to prioritize the security of their artists.
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