7 Arrested in Clashes Over Confederate Statue at University of North Carolina

North Carolina has become a focal point in the debate over Civil War-era memorials

Confederate Monuments
Gerry Broome/AP

Seven people were arrested Saturday in clashes over the fate of a Confederate statue that was toppled this week on the campus of the University of North Carolina Chapel Hill, school officials said.

The circa-1913 monument known as "Silent Sam," now in temporary storage, was decried by critics as a symbol of racist heritage, NBC News reported. But a few demonstrators stood in favor of restoring the statue as a tribute to fallen ancestors.

In a message to the campus community, the university said none of the suspects were affiliated with the university. Administrators said the protest drew 100 people and that it was "highly charged."

North Carolina has become a focal point in the debate over Civil War-era memorials. UNC leaders, including the school's chancellor, Carol Folt, said state law had prevented the removal of the statue.

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