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Barack Obama statue attacked by Facebook critics

world Updated: Dec 15, 2009 21:50 IST
AP
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A statue of President Barack Obama as a boy erected in a Jakarta park has been targeted in a Facebook campaign by thousands who say it should be removed.

The Indonesian-language Facebook group named "Take Down the Barack Obama Statue in Taman Menteng Park" had attracted more than 15,000 members by Tuesday since the 43-inch (110-centimeter) statue of 10-year-old Obama dressed in shorts and a T-shirt was unveiled in the downtown park on Thursday last week.

Heru Nugroho, the group's creator, said he would use the support on the popular social networking Web site to demand that Jakarta Gov Fauzi Bowo remove the statue.

"Everybody knows that Obama is a world leader, but he is not our national hero who deserves to be awarded a statue," Nugroho said.

"This has hurt our national pride because there are many Indonesian figures that gave worthy service to this nation but no statue has been built for them," he added.

A separate, English-language Facebook site with the same name was created by a California man and has attracted about 100 members, mostly in the US.

Many Indonesians are proud of the fact that Obama lived in Jakarta from 1967 to 1971 with his American mother, his Indonesian stepfather and his half-sister.

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