COPENHAGEN, Denmark — The famed statue of Hans Christian Andersen’s Little Mermaid, one of Copenhagen’s biggest tourist draws, has been vandalized with the text “racist fish.”
The words were tagged on the stone on which the oft-attacked 1.65-meter (5.4-foot)-high bronze is sitting at the entrance of the Copenhagen harbor.
No one has taken responsibility for the act.
The statue was created in tribute to the Danish storyteller Andersen. It has long been a popular target for vandals, who have blown her off her perch, beheaded her and painted her.
The bronze is based on a mythical sea king’s mermaid daughter who, according to the Hans Christian Andersen tale, falls in love with a prince and longs to become human.
Last month, a statue in Copenhagen of a Danish missionary who was key to the colonization of Greenland, was doused with red paint and the words “decolonize.”
It was not known whether the two cases of vandalism were linked. Statues and monuments around the world are being reconsidered in light of racial justice demonstrations following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis.
The movement worldwide has extended to pull down statues of former slaveholders, imperialists, conquerors and explorers including Christopher Columbus, Cecil Rhodes and Belgium’s King Leopold II.
Rights activists on Thursday accused Danish officials of being unable to recognize racism after authorities said the killing of a biracial man by two white men was not racially motivated.