Black Lives Matter: Woman decides not to erase swastika vandalism

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Media caption,
Margaret Ogunbanwo was going for her morning walk when she saw the swastika on her garage

A woman who has decided not to erase a swastika found painted on her garage door has said: "If we wash it away it's like it didn't really happen".

Margaret Ogunbanwo, from Penygroes, Caernarfon, spotted the "huge white thing" as she started her morning walk.

Despite worrying at first, she decided to leave it as a reminder of why Black Lives Matters protests are happening.

She reported the graffiti to North Wales Police, which has launched an investigation.

Image caption,
Margaret Ogunbanwo found the offensive graffiti on her garage door

Speaking to BBC Wales, mother-of-two Mrs Ogunbanwo said she believed she and her family was targeted because they are black.

She said her first thought when she saw the swastika was "do I need to be scared?"

"I thought 'Oh no, if somebody is feeling this way, maybe I won't be safe going for a walk'," she said.

After some consideration, she decided not to erase the graffiti, and believes it will serves as a reminder of "the importance of Black Lives Matter".

"I'm going to leave that thing up there and let my village see it," she said.

"If we wash it away, it's like it didn't really happen and I want people to remember it".

Image source, Margaret Ogunbanwo
Image caption,
Margaret Ogunbanwo plans to attend tomorrow's protest in Caernarfon with her family

Exotic foods shop owner Mrs Ogunbanwo, who has lived in the Gwynedd village for 13 years, said her family has had some experience of racism over the years.

"I had my windows smashed and my door egged, but that was years ago," she said.

"My children had to deal with racist comments at school. I was so furious. But the school handled it really well.

Solidarity

She said the family was "deliberating" whether to attend Sunday's protest in Caernarfon, but the graffiti experience had convinced them to go.

"It's about solidarity: let them look out for me so I don't have to look over my shoulder," she said.

"We need to let people know what's going on."

A North Wales Police statement said: "Officers are appealing for witnesses and information after racist graffiti was sprayed onto a property in Penygroes.

"At approximately 02:00 BST an offender has sprayed graffiti onto a garage door on the property located on the high street."