Bust of King Leopold II outside the Africa Museum in Tervuren daubed with paint

Once again a bust of King Leopold II has been daubed with paint outside the Africa Museum in the Flemish Brabant municipality of Tervuren. Given that the letters “BLM” have been daubed on the pedestal of the bust, it would seem likely that Black Lives Matter activists or sympathisers are responsible. It is already the third time that the bust of the second King of the Belgians in Tervuren has been targeted. Under King Leopold II reign many atrocities were committed in what was then the Congo Free State. Congo Free State was the personal property of King Leopold II from 1885 to 1908.



The Director of the Africa Museum Guido Gryseels told VRT News that "This is the third time that the bust of Leopold II at the Africa Museum in Tervuren has been daubed. The letters BML have been written on it. This act is part of a general protest movement against Leopold II and the violent regime in the Congo Free State. It certainly won’t be the last time that this happens”.

Mr Gryseels went on to say that "In October the Parliamentary Commission on Congo will begin. It will look into our colonial history and whether or not Belgium should apologise. I suspect that further action will follow. With what we already know about the regime of Leopold II in Congo, I have every understanding for those involved in these acts”.

The bust is owned by the Buildings Commission. Mr Gryseels says that he has been told that the Commission intends to put a plaque underneath the bust explaining the role that the second King of the Belgian played in Congo. The Buildings’ Commission has asked the Africa Museum to write the text for the plaque.


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