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'Refugees Welcome' banner illegally placed on Statue of Liberty

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Posted at 6:01 PM, Feb 21, 2017
and last updated 2017-02-22 12:48:56-05

A banner saying "Refugees Welcome" was illegally placed on the Statue of Liberty on Tuesday, as officials from the National Park Service had to quickly tear down the banner from the base of the statue. 

The incident took place as President Donald Trump mulls a revamped executive order to ban some travel from several Muslim-majority countries, including Syria. Refugees from the Syrian Civil War were effectively banned from the United States after Trump issued an executive order last month banning Syrian refugees from entering the United States. 

The order has drawn criticism from many on the left, as well as human rights groups. 

The 3-by-20 foot banner was reportedly placed by a group calling itself "Alt Lady Liberty."

"Almost all Americans have descendants from somewhere else," the group said in a statement to CNN. "Immigrants and refugees make this country great. And turning away refugees, like we did to Anne Frank, does not make us great. Refugees are welcome here, Muslims are welcome here and immigrants are welcome here.

"And it's not just our ancestors. Every American knows an immigrant or a refugee. We wanted to send a reminder about America when we're at our best -- the country that's a beacon of freedom to the world, built by immigrants. Walling off countries or entire religions is against our values. That's what the Statue of Liberty stands for."