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Man arrested after statue of Danish coloniser is vandalised in Greenland

The artwork depicted Hans Egede, a Lutheran missionary who arrived on the island in 1721.

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The vandalised statue of noted coloniser Hans Egede in Nuuk, Greenland (Christian Klindt Soelbeck/AP)

The vandalised statue of noted coloniser Hans Egede in Nuuk, Greenland (Christian Klindt Soelbeck/AP)

The vandalised statue of noted coloniser Hans Egede in Nuuk, Greenland (Christian Klindt Soelbeck/AP)

Police in Greenland have detained a man in his early 30s in connection with the vandalism of a statue of a Danish coloniser that was doused with red paint and the word “decolonise”.

Police told Greenland broadcaster KNR on Monday that investigations of the defacement of the statue of Hans Egede, a Lutheran missionary who arrived on the vast island in 1721, were ongoing.

The suspect was not identified.

The statue in Nuuk’s old district was vandalised early on Sunday as Greenland was marking its National Day.

It has been vandalised before.

Statues and monuments of people associated with racism or colonialism have been targeted in light of the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis last month.

Mr Egede, who was born in Norway that was part of Denmark at the time, is considered to be the person who colonised Greenland and founded the capital, Nuuk.

Greenland was a Danish colony until 1953 when it became a formal part of the Danish Realm.

In 2009, Greenland became a self-governing entity.

PA