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Toppled queen statues in Manitoba being assessed; federal Conservatives want them restored

Click to play video: 'Federal Conservatives urge Manitoba Premier to restore statues of Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria' Federal Conservatives urge Manitoba Premier to restore statues of Queen Elizabeth, Queen Victoria
WATCH: Federal Conservative politicians in Manitoba have written to Premier Brian Pallister to urge the government to restore the statues quickly. – Jul 6, 2021

The fate of two toppled statues on the grounds of the Manitoba legislature remains unclear.

The statues of Queen Elizabeth and Queen Victoria were brought down with ropes on Canada Day by demonstrators who were protesting the deaths of Indigenous children at residential schools.

Read more: ‘Statues can be replaced, children can’t’: Indigenous leaders react to Canada Day protest

The head on the Queen Victoria statue was removed and dumped in a river before being recovered.

The Manitoba government says the statues have been taken away and are being assessed for damage.

Click to play video: 'Queen Victoria statue toppled outside Manitoba legislature on Canada Day' Queen Victoria statue toppled outside Manitoba legislature on Canada Day
Queen Victoria statue toppled outside Manitoba legislature on Canada Day – Jul 2, 2021

Winnipeg police say they are investigating, but no charges have been laid.

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Federal Conservative politicians in Manitoba have written to Premier Brian Pallister to urge the government to restore the statues quickly.

Read more: Plans in the works for memorial at former Winnipeg residential school

“Vandalism at the legislature and the burning of places of worship in provinces across Canada are criminal acts contrary to reconciliation,” reads the letter signed by the eight Conservative members of Parliament in Manitoba, as well as by Eric Melillo, MP for Kenora in northwestern Ontario.

“We cannot allow a small number of individuals to subvert our democracy or erode our democratic institutions. Therefore, we respectfully request that the statues … be repaired and restored to the legislative grounds as soon as possible.”

Click to play video: 'Winnipeg police to investigate after protesters topple statue of Queen Victoria on Canada Day' Winnipeg police to investigate after protesters topple statue of Queen Victoria on Canada Day
Winnipeg police to investigate after protesters topple statue of Queen Victoria on Canada Day – Jul 2, 2021

Assembly of Manitoba Chiefs Grand Chief Arlen Dumas said while the letter was “quite measured,” he disagrees with the idea of replacing the statues.

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“Replacing these statues with the very same colonial figureheads, whilst bypassing any First Nation engagement or consideration on what statues best teach the history of this province is tone deaf, ignorant and beyond disrespectful,” he said in a statement sent to media.

“Why would we simply repeat colonial and tragic history by re-erecting the same colonial representations? These MPs should read the room instead of catering to their far-right base.”

Read the full statement here:

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