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Thursday, February 5, 1998 Published at 15:10 GMT

World: Europe

Danish cameraman charged with decapitating Little Mermaid
image: [ The Little Mermaid is Denmark's best known landmark ]
The Little Mermaid is Denmark's best known landmark

The Danish police say a television cameraman has been arrested and charged with cutting off the head of the famous bronze statue of the Little Mermaid in Copenhagen harbour.

The man had alerted the police to the statue's decapitation last month and was later involved in its recovery outside a television studio.

The statue, which has since been repaired, is based on a Hans Christian Andersen tale.

It draws about a million visitors a year to the harbourside park in Copenhagen where it normally sits looking out to sea.

Danes consider it as much a national symbol as the Eiffel Tower is to the French or Big Ben to the British.

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