A small town in the Italian region of Tuscany is planning to build a marble statue of US President Donald Trump in a bid to boost tourism. Mario Puglia, mayor of Vagli di Sotto town, backs the project, which will cost €80,000 ($85,000; £64,000).
"I appreciate his [Trump's] coherence. I don't want to talk about his ideas, but he is keeping the promises made during his electoral campaign, and this is important. He was elected democratically and he has the right to govern," Puglia told Il Fatto Quotidiano website.
The mayor added that private donors had already provided €100,000 for the project. "The US government, through diplomatic contacts, expressed its gratitude," he said.
The statue will be placed in the middle of 'Honour and Dishonour Park'. Puglia explained "history will decide whether Trump deserves honour or dishonour".
The statues in the dishonour section, features that of Francesco Schettino, former captain of cruise ship Costa Concordia, which capsized resulting in the death of 32 passengers in 2012.
A statue of David Bowie – which costed €65,000 and was funded by private businesses – can be found in the honour section.
Puglia acknowledged the Trump statue could be seen by some as a provocation. The former property magnate drew widespread critcism during his electoral campaign and after assuming office in Janaury 2017. Among other things, the leader sparked outrage for what has been dubbed as the "Muslim Ban", which sees people from seven Mulism-majority countries being barred from entering the US for 120 days.
"There will be controversy, but many tourists are also expected. We had 235,000 tourists in 2016. It was a great result for a town inhabited by 1,000 people," Puglia concluded.