Vandals spray iconic Little Mermaid statue in colours of Russian flag

Copenhagen’s Little Mermaid statue, the Danish capital’s most recognisable tourist landmark, had the colours of the Russian flag spray-painted across its base. The Danish police have opened a vandalism investigation into the attack of the nation’s most famous tourist landmark.

The famous sculpture sits next to the port of Langelinie, and is visited annually by more than a million tourists.

In its more than 110 years of existence, the artwork has often been used as an object of political protest and this is not the first time that the famous statue has been vandalised.

It has been beheaded three times, had an arm ripped off and even had its granite pedestal blown off with explosives, as well as being painted in various colours and dressed in football jerseys, veils and even a Ku Klux Klan tunic.

Political rows involving the famous statute have ranged widely from squatter rights and feminist groups to anti-immigration

The Danish government has been known for its clear support for Ukraine in the face of Russian military intervention, both financially and militarily, with various aid packages.

In particular, the Danish parliament, taking advantage of the absolute majority enjoyed by the Social Democrat-led centrist government, has approved the abolition of a public holiday to increase defence spending, despite massive opposition from the population, the opposition, trade unions and the National Lutheran Church.

Despite Denmark’s official position of neutrality, the country has expressed support for Ukraine in various ways.

In February 2022, Denmark’s foreign minister, Jeppe Kofod, visited Ukraine and met with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky to discuss the conflict and Denmark’s support for Ukraine.

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The Danish government has also provided humanitarian aid to Ukraine, including medical supplies and equipment, to help alleviate the suffering of civilians affected by the conflict.

Individuals in Denmark have also expressed their support for Ukraine. In February 2022, a group of Danish artists created a mural in the Ukrainian city of Kyiv, depicting a person holding a candle and a heart-shaped balloon with the words “We Love Ukraine” written in both Danish and Ukrainian.

The mural was intended to show solidarity with the Ukrainian people and to raise awareness of the conflict in Denmark.

Danemark’s Government has also condemned Russia’s actions in Ukraine. In March 2023, Danish Foreign Minister Jeppe Kofod expressed concern about the situation in Ukraine during a meeting with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, at the G20 summit in Mexico City.

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It comes as the US is expected to announce a new package of Ukraine military aid for Ukraine Friday, including for the first time eight armored vehicles that can launch bridges and allow troops to cross rivers or other gaps.

The officials said the total cost of the package will be about $400 million and will also include large amounts of ammunition, such as rockets for the High Mobility Artillery Rocket Systems.

It comes just a week after the one-year anniversary of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and as Ukrainian forces are preparing for a spring offensive.

Officials spoke on condition of anonymity because the aid package has not yet been publicly announced.

The so-called Armored Vehicle Launched Bridge is a portable, 60-foot folding metal bridge that is carried on top of a tank body. Providing that system now could help Ukrainian troops as they launch the expected offensive, and make it easier for troops to cross rivers to get to Russian forces.

 

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