New York City

Harry Belafonte, WTC Memorial Designer Are Members of de Blasio's NYC Statues Panel

Civil rights leader Harry Belafonte and World Trade Center memorial designer Michael Arad will help advise New York City officials on what to do with statues and monuments seen as oppressive.

They are among 18 members of a commission on public art, monuments and markers named by Mayor Bill de Blasio on Friday.

The panel is being convened amid protests over Confederate monuments in cities around the country.

Some in New York City have called for the removal of a statue of Dr. J. Marion Sims, who operated on enslaved black women without their informed consent.

Others say the towering statue of Columbus donated to the city in 1892 should go.

The advisory panel will be co-chaired by Ford Foundation President Darren Walker and the city's commissioner of cultural affairs, Tom Finkelpearl.

Copyright AP - Associated Press
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