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Kotka removes Finland's last remaining Lenin statue

The statue will be moved to the Kymenlaakso Museum, which will decide on whether or not to use it in an exhibition.

Kotka will remove Finland's last publicly displayed Lenin statue on Tuesday. Image: Mikko Savolainen / Yle

The Statue of Vladimir Lenin in Kotka's Pohjoispuistokatu square is being relocated to a warehouse on Tuesday.

The move comes after Kotka City Council voted to remove the statue from the square in June, following calls for its removal after Russia invaded Ukraine.

The statue is part of the City of Kotka's art collection, and its possible use in an exhibition will be decided by the Kymenlaakso Museum.

Kirsi Niku, director of the Kymenlaakso Museum, said the museum's opinion is that the statue could well have remained in its original location.

"Even if this generation doesn't see it, future generations will certainly be interested in it. It is history in its own time," Niku told Yle.

The museum plans to consider how the statue will be used, but has offered no timetable, with Niku estimating that such a decision could take years.

A citizens' initiative as well as a request from the city council urged the to remove the statue.

Kotka's twin city of Tallinn gifted the statue, created by the Estonian sculptor Matti Varik,in 1979.

Over the years, the statue has drawn some criticism over the years, but a debate about it intensified last February after Russia's deadly invasion of Ukraine.

Turku removed a Lenin statue earlier this year and Helsinki removed a Soviet-gifted statue in August.

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