As the anti-racism protests sparked across the USA, the world took notice. All around the globe, people started marching in solidarity with the US Black Lives Matter movement. One of the countries which showed the most support is the UK, with thousands of people showing up to the gatherings in the cities of London, Bristol, Manchester, Wolverhampton, Nottingham, Glasgow, Edinburgh, and others. However, out of all them, Bristol gained the most attention recently. On Sunday, 10,000 protesters joined the cause in Bristol and made a powerful statement by pulling down a bronze statue of the well-known 17th-century slave trader Edward Colston.

Recently, anti-racism protesters in Bristol made a splash by taking down the statue of a slave trader and trowing in the harbor

The statue was erected in 1895 to honor Colston’s philanthropic work towards people in the city. However, back in the day, he was a well-known slave trader who amassed a large percentage of his wealth through the exploitation of African people. He was the most senior executive of the Royal African Company, which transported about 100,000 people from Africa to the Americas.

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Even though there were earlier attempts to take down the controversial statue, there were no plans arranged up until the protesters decided to take matters into their own hands. On Sunday, they toppled the 18-foot bronze statue from its pedestal using ropes.

A protester was pictured with his knee on the figure’s neck—reenacting the restraining of George Floyd. The statue was later dragged through the streets and thrown into the harbor.

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The act has gained a lot of momentum. Some celebrated removing the symbol of Britain’s racist past, while others chose to condemn the protesters who took part in it. The Wikipedia page of the Edward Colston statue has received an update on its condition: “Drowning in Bristol Harbour where he belongs,” which was later changed to “Figure toppled, damaged and removed, and plinth defaced by demonstrators.”

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However, some of those who disapproved of the toppling of the statue actually tried to retrieve it from the water, although with no success.

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Image credits: CorbynistaTeen

Someone even took the time to update its new location on Google maps.

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Meanwhile, the British government took a stance by denouncing the toppling of the statue. After the incident, the UK’s Prime Minister Boris Johnson said those who attack public property “will face the full force of the law.” However, the removal of the statue was long supported by Bristol Mayor Marvin Rees, who is of Jamaican heritage. While the mayor said he “cannot condone the damage,” he described the action as an “iconic moment.”

Here’s what people had to say about the protesters’ actions

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Some internet users weren’t happy to hear such news

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While others were applauding the protesters

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