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Big Potato gets the chop

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A giant potato statue that has garnered world attention was toppled after another vandal attack on the popular tourism site in Xylophagou.

Police are investigating the chopping down of the so-called “Big Potato” that happened on New Years Day.

The four-metre sculpture in the village of Xylophagou was cut down from its stand at around in the early hours of 1 January, local officials said.

The statue was the brainchild of community leader George Tasou in homage to the spunta Potato, a variety local to the area.

Tasou, expecting an attack, guarded the landmark until the early hours of New Year’s Day and had asked someone else to take over when he left.

But it was discovered vandalised, with around €5,000 in damage caused, and Tasou reported the incident to British Bases police.

In November, the monument was defaced with graffiti, with Tasou offering a €500 bounty to find the culprits.

In October, the village erected the Big Potato, a replica of the ‘spunta’ (seed potato) variety, sparking mixed reactions from locals and tourists.

It had locals up in arms after the village’s homage went viral on social media, attracting unflattering comments about the odd-looking eyesore.

The local council received dozens of complaints from angry residents, demanding the statue be brought down, as it defames the village.

Most critics say the four-metre-tall object looks nothing like a potato but a giant sex toy or worse.

Tasou, a former MP for ruling DISY, defended the potato sculpture, noting it pays homage to the main product of the area’s ‘red soil’ villages.

He invited people to take photos of the Big Potato to attract more visitors to the village.

Sure enough, the potato monument has attracted scores of curious sightseers who visited the village to photograph the controversial monument.