A 22-year-old British tourist is missing after diving off the famous Old Bridge in the Bosnian town of Mostar into the swollen and freezing Neretva River, police said on Monday.
"Dylan Kane Etherington, who currently resides in Australia, dived into the river at around 12:30 p.m. local time and rescue teams are still searching the Neretva which has risen 10 metres above its normal level," police spokesman Srecko Bosnjak said.
The official said Etherington was accompanied by two Australians, one of whom filmed his dive from the bridge which is typically 23-27 metres above the water. They told police that locals with experience of diving into the river -- usually in summer -- had tried to dissuade the tourist from diving.
Witnesses said Etherington became determined to make the dive after reading about the bridge, which was first built in the 16th century, destroyed by Croat shelling in the 1992-95 Bosnian War and rebuilt in 2004 by Turkey's fund.
An international tourist attraction, Mostar's bridge is included in a U.N. list of worldwide cultural heritage sites and is also famous for river dives.
ReutersLast Mod: 22 Şubat 2010, 21:50