Puerto Rico Ponders New Site for Shunned Statue

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SAN JUAN (AP).- A towering statue of Christopher Columbus shunned by several U.S. cities may finally find a home on an uninhabited Puerto Rican island. Rep. David Bonilla filed a resolution asking the government to study the viability of installing the roughly 600-ton bronze statue, which is twice the height of the Statue of Liberty without its pedestal, on the tiny island of Desecheo. The statue began its ill-fated, two-decade journey in 1991, when it was built by controversial Russian sculptor Zurab Tsereteli to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Columbus’ 1492 arrival in the Western Hemisphere. It was rejected by New York, Miami, Baltimore and other cities for reasons ranging from cost to appearance before finally being accepted by Puerto Rico. The statue shows Columbus at the wheel of a tiny ship with three billowing sails behind him. Critics have said the explorer’s arms are too long, the head too small and his one-handed greeting pose silly. The Puerto Rican plan was to