Leonard Peltier paintings being removed after complaint

Leonard Peltier. Photo from Amnesty International

The Washington Department of Labor and Industries is removing four paintings by imprisoned American Indian Movement activist Leonard Peltier after the Retired FBI Agents Association complained.

The paintings were displayed in the lobby of the agency's headquarters in Tumwater as part of Native American Heritage Month. They were painted by Peltier as he serves out two life terms in prison for the killings of two FBI agents on the Pine Ridge Reservation in 1974.

A work by imprisoned American Indian Movement activist Leonard Peltier. Photo from International Leonard Peltier Defense Committee / Facebook

“Former agents of the FBI, joined by state police officers, have imposed their personal views on the citizens of the state of Washington. It’s ironic that in celebration of Native American Month, the government is suppressing freedom of expression by a Native American," Peter Clark, the co-director of the International Leonard Peltier Defense Committee, said in a press release. "But everyone should be alarmed by this occurrence. Once you allow the censorship of an artist by government, you give it the power to censor everyone.”

The paintings will be removed sometime this week, KING 5 News reported, and will be replaced by works from another Native artist.

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State agency to remove convicted cop killer's artwork (KING 5 News 11/13)

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