Support The Moscow Times!

'Ghosts Haunt' Russia's APEC Summit Site

But who can the university call? Ghostbusters? JD Hancock

U.S. President Barack Obama might have a new reason to be glad he skipped an APEC summit in Vladivostok. The island where world leaders gathered in September is supposedly haunted by ghosts.

University students living in housing constructed for the summit on Russky Island have reported numerous sightings of ghosts, saying they enter their rooms, pound on walls and bite feet, local news agency VladNews reported.

The students are studying on the newly constructed campus of the Far Eastern Federal University, which was built as part of a multibillion-ruble construction spree aimed at sprucing up the city for the summit. The ghosts, students say, might be the souls of people who perished on this remote island.

At the center of the ghost reports is a student who first mentioned strange happenings Tuesday on the university's "Heard at FEFU" community on the VKontakte social network.

The unidentified student said personal belongings began moving around his dorm room at the start of the academic year in September, including a toothbrush that appeared on the toilet seat and his sneakers in his bedding linen.

He said he wrote off the incidents as a prank until the evening of Sept. 18, when "a tower of textbooks and notepads" mysteriously appeared in the middle of his room while he made a quick visit to the bathroom.

After that, he said, he has been awoken at night by the feeling that someone was breathing on his face or pulling him on the leg. He said students in nearby rooms have complained about hearing someone knocking on the walls and weeping in his room while he was off campus.

One night, the student continued, he woke up to see four dark blurry figures right above him discussing in "a hissing whisper" the juiciness of his body. One of the figures said repeatedly, "I'm hungry, I'm hungry," he said.

Then the student felt sharp pain in his ankle and, switching on the light, found a bruise and teeth marks on his ankle.

"I moved out the next day," the student said.

A few other university students have reported similar sightings, local news reports said.

Officials at Far Eastern Federal University said they had not aware of any ghosts on the campus.

Several conscript Navy sailors starved to death on Russky Island in the 1990s, VladNews said.

Obama dealt a blow to the prestige of the APEC summit when skipped it in favor of working on his re-election campaign at home. His decision was announced after President Vladimir Putin snubbed a Group of Eight gathering of world leaders hosted by Obama. Both the White House and the Kremlin have insisted that the decisions were unrelated.

Read more