Workers in the Ukrainian Black Sea port of Odesa on Thursday pulled down a statue of the Russian empress Catherine II, better known as Catherine the Great, that had been regularly vandalized since Moscow’s invasion of its border neighbor in February.
Odesa’s city council last month ordered the statue removed. According to media reports, a slim majority of residents wanted to demolish the statue of the woman who reigned over Russia from 1762 to 1796.
The statue is formally known as the Monument to the Founders of Odesa. It was erected in 1900 to commemorate the centennial of the city’s founding. It also features other czarist-era images.
Ukrainian officials long sought the removal of the statue but said only local leaders in Odesa had the authority to order it pulled down. It will be relocated to a temporary storage space and then to a museum, Reuters said.