The Statue of Liberty was the latest site of protest against President Donald Trump’s policies on Tuesday after a banner in support of refugees was unfurled near its base.
The banner, which was about 3-feet-by-20-feet and read “Refugees Welcome,” was first noticed by the National Parks Service around 12:50 p.m., the agency said.
The Twitter account Alt Lady Liberty, which has posted original photos and retweeted news coverage, appears to be connected to those who were behind the banner.
“The message of the Statue of Liberty is unmistakable. This banner ought to make it clear 2 @realDonaldTrump #RefugeesWelcome #NoBanNoWall,” the account tweeted.
The banner was removed around 1:42 p.m., the National Parks Service said. The Alt Lady Liberty Twitter account also confirmed the banner had been removed, but added, “we will keep the spirit alive!”
“Rangers, alerted to the presence of the banner, immediately made their way to the location and conducted an assessment of the banner and how it was attached to the monument,” the NPS said in a statement. “It was determined that the banner could be removed without damaging the pedestal and Rangers began the process of removing it.”
The anonymous activist(s) behind the banner said in an emailed statement that it was in direct response to Trump’s travel ban which, before facing challenges in court, temporarily barred refugees from entering the country.
“The Muslim ban flies against everything we are as Americans. That’s true of the unconstitutional original version, and the spirit of any edits they may make to it,” the statement said, in part. “We wanted to send a reminder about America when we’re at our best — the country that’s a beacon of freedom to the world, built by immigrants. Walling off countries or entire religions is against our values.”
The National Parks Service, which runs operations at the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island, said it is investigating the incident.
“Affixing a banner to the national monument is strictly prohibited, and an investigation is underway by the United States Park Police to identify suspects,” the agency said in its statement.