Marx statue from China sparks row in his hometown

The hometown of Karl Marx Trier in western Germany has received a controversial gift from China — the statue of German philosopher Karl Marx for his 200th birthday celebrations on May 5, German media reports. Ulrich Delius, director of the Society for Threatened Peoples, said it is “sad” the city last year decided to accept a statue from a government that “commits state terror against its own people.” It is a poisonous gift from China, Delius added. Denouncing the “bizarre” gesture, Dieter Dombrowski of the Union of Victims’ Associations of Communist Tyranny said Marx was not just a scientist and philosopher. He laid the spiritual foundations for  communist dictatorships. But Trier’s councillor Andreas Ludwig said the statue, created by Chinese artist Wu Weishan, could encourage discussion about his work. Moreover, some 50,000 Chinese tourists visit the town annually, Ludwig said. Workers on Friday mounted the 2.3 tonne, 5.5-metre bronze statue of Karl Marx on a pedestal in Trier’s city centre in front of the former Marx family home (pictured). The statue will be unveiled to the public on his birthday on May 5. It depicts Marx in a frock coat stepping forward with his left foot. Marx was born on May 5, 1818, in Trier and spent the first 17 years of his life there.