Greenlanders voted to keep a statue that has become the center of a dispute over the Arctic island’s former colonial ties to Denmark.
The capital Nuuk gave citizens the chance to vote on whether they want the bronze effigy of 18th-century Danish missionary Hans Egede to stay in place. It’s one of the city’s most famous monuments, but was recently the target of vandalism.
According to Greenland’s state broadcaster KNR, 921 people voted to keep the statue and 600 voted against. The city will make its final decision in September.
Greenland, which has about 56,000 inhabitants, is still a part of the Kingdom of Denmark but has extensive home rule.
Last month, as the island celebrated its national day, the statue was sprayed with red paint and its base had the word “decolonize” painted on it.
A Lutheran, Egede established a colony in Greenland in 1721 with the aim of converting the island to his faith.
His statue has been vandalized several times over the years. Bloomberg News