The US city’s mayor refuses to dismantled the monument, which was given as a gift by Russia
FILE PHOTO: Russian President Vladimir Putin stands with then-mayor of Bayonne Joseph Doria in front of 9/11 memorial, Bayonne, N.J., Sept. 15, 2005 © AP / Mike Derer
A city in New Jersey has covered up Russian President Vladimir Putin’s name from a 9/11 memorial gifted to the American people back in 2005, due to Russia’s ongoing military offensive in Ukraine.
The Teardrop Memorial – which is officially named ‘To the Struggle Against World Terrorism’ – was given to the United States in 2005 as a gift from the Russian people to commemorate the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The monument was placed in the city of Bayonne, New Jersey after Jersey City – the capital of the state – rejected it.
Putin attended the memorial’s opening ceremony and a plaque featured the Russian president’s name for nearly two decades before it was covered up in the wake of Russia’s conflict with Ukraine last month.
According to local reports, Putin’s name was covered up with tape before “a more permanent acrylic board” was used on Monday to censor his name from the plaque.
NEW, EXCLUSIVE VIDEO: Vladimir Putin’s name disappears from the “Tear Drop” 9/11 memorial in Bayonne, a gift from him and the Russian People. My story tonight @NBCNewYorkpic.twitter.com/JV9fsKzUXf
— Brian Thompson (@brian4NY) March 14, 2022
Tom Cotter, Bayonne’s director of the Department of Public Works, said it was “unfortunate” that Putin’s name was on the monument and likened “what’s happening in Ukraine right now” to “a form of terrorism.”
“But I don’t want this to be a Putin thing. I still want this to be a 9/11 monument,” he said.
Mayor Jimmy Davis dismissed removing the memorial altogether and vowed that despite the modification, “this monument is going nowhere.”