Earlier in the city, there were clashes between protesters and police related to the fate of this monument.
Chicago mayor Laurie Lightfoot ordered the removal of the statue of Christopher Columbus in Grant Park in downtown Chicago. This became known early on Friday morning, a week after demonstrators clashed with police demanding that the monument be removed.
From Thursday to Friday, a special team arrived at about 1 a.m. local time and used a crane to remove the statue of Columbus within 2 hours. A small group of people gathered here cheered the demolition of the monument, passing cars gave sound signals. It is not yet clear what the future fate of the monument will be.
The plans to remove the statue of Columbus were first reported on Thursday evening in the Chicago Tribune. The removal was made a few hours after a heated dispute arose between supporters and opponents of the demolition of the monument.
Last Friday, protesters who had gathered to demand that the monument be demolished clashed with police, who used batons and arrested some demonstrators. According to law enforcement, this was done after the protesters started throwing fireworks, stones, and other objects at the police.
It is reported that mayor Lightfoot decided on the demolition of the monument to avoid new collisions. Earlier, the mayor of Chicago opposed the destruction of a monument in honor of the Italian Navigator, the discoverer of America, because it would erase the pages of history.
The demolition of the monument occurred against the backdrop of plans by US President Donald Trump to send federal law enforcement officers to Chicago, as well as to some other cities, to combat gun crimes.
Throughout the United States, protesters are calling for the removal of monuments to Christopher Columbus, claiming that he is responsible for the genocide and cruel exploitation of the indigenous peoples of America. In many places, such as the “Little Italy” area of Chicago, Italian Americans consider Columbus a symbol of their heritage.