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Statues of colonisers and royalty increasingly under public attack

Image: russellstreet [CC BY-SA 2.0], via Flickr

Otago study finds rise in defacement and decapitation of controversial figures

Attacks on public statues in New Zealand have increased over the past 30 years, with British royalty, military figures and explorers being the main targets, a University of Otago study has found.

Researchers looked at 123 statues on public land in NZ and found that almost a quarter had been damaged, splattered with paint or daubed with graffiti at least once. They include statues of captain James Cook, Queen Victoria and navy commander John Hamilton.

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