New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said he supports New York City's statue of Christopher Columbus because it represents the "Italian-American contribution in New York."
Anti-racist and Black Lives Matter protests have prompted the removal of some statues of Confederate leaders — and now statues of Christopher Columbus, another controversial figure in US history, are also being taken down, reports the CNN.
Columbus has long been a contentious figure in history for his treatment of the Indigenous communities he encountered and for his role in the violent colonization at their expense.
Asked today if the Columbus statue in Central Park should be removed, Cuomo said he understands "the dialogue that's been going on for a number of years," but ultimately supports the statue.
"The statue has come to represent and signify appreciation of the Italian-American contribution to New York. For that reason, I support it," he said.
The governor added that some of Columbus' acts are ones that "nobody would support."