A statue of Mahatma Gandhi has been vandalised in Amsterdam by unknown people with graffiti and spray painting, amid a wave of attacks following global protests over the custodial killing of African-American George Floyd, according to media reports.
The statue of Mahatma Gandhi, which signifies a path of peace and non-violence, on the Churchilllaan in Amsterdam was covered with red paint and the pedestal had "racist" and an abbreviation for an expletive against the police chalked on it, Metro, the Dutch newspaper, reported, according to news agency PTI.
According to alderman Rutger Groot Wassink, the municipality will file a declaration for daubing.
"Obviously, we are opposed to any form of vandalism and daubing of these things is completely unacceptable," the city official was quoted as saying in the report.
"It is logical that we will file a declaration, the image will be cleaned," Wassink said.
It is not yet known who is behind the daubing.
An employee of the Kunstwacht, who provides maintenance and repairs, says that the cleaning work can take hours.
A 75-year-old man saw the daubs on Wednesday and called the municipality.
"I have lived here for forty years and I have never experienced this. I have been watching the statue for years," the man said.
Since the death of 46-year-old Floyd on May 25 in Minneapolis, US, and subsequent worldwide Black Lives Matter protests, there has been much debate about street names and statues of people with a colonial past. All over the world, statues of historical figures are brought down or defaced.
Recently, images and buildings have been defaced in various places that refer to the colonial past of the Netherlands, including the Tropenmuseum in Amsterdam and the statue of Piet Hein in Rotterdam. These are anti-racist expressions that follow the death of Floyd by a white police officer, Metro reported.
Mahatma Gandhi was known as a champion of human rights and non-violence.
The statue was unveiled on the Churchillaan on October 2, 1990 in honour of Mahatma Gandhi's 121st birthday.
The design was made by the sculptor Karel Gomes, who died in 2016. At the time, the plan for the statue came from the Hindu organisation Triveda.
Mahatma Gandhi is depicted walking, featuring robes around the body, slippers on the feet, a book in one hand and a stick in the other.
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