London mayor Sadiq Khan says the city “shouldn’t be commemorating or memorialising people who were slavers” after he launched a review into the capital’s landmarks.
It follows the tearing down of a statue of slave trader Edward Colston in Bristol over the weekend.
Mr Khan told Sky’s Kay Burley he wants to “have a city that better reflects the city”, adding that “I suspect the committee may take down slavers’ statues”.
He went on: “We shouldn’t be commemorating or memorialising people who were slavers.”
Mr Khan said in a statement that London is “one of the most diverse cities in the world”, but recent Black Lives Matter protests have highlighted the fact that the city’s statues, plaques and street names largely reflect Victorian Britain.
“We must ensure that we celebrate the achievements and diversity of all in our city, and that we commemorate those who have made London what it is – that includes questioning which legacies are being celebrated.
“The Black Lives Matter protests have rightly brought this to the public’s attention, but it’s important that we take the right steps to work together to bring change and ensure that we can all be proud of our public landscape.”
Historians and arts, council and community leaders will sit on the commission.
Further anti-racism demonstrations are planned later to coincide with Mr Floyd’s funeral in the US.
Mr Floyd, who died after a police officer in Minneapolis restrained him by kneeling on his neck, will be buried in his home town of Houston in Texas.
A symbolic and socially distanced commemoration is planned at the Nelson Mandela statue in Parliament Square in London at 5pm, organised by Stand Up To Racism.
After protests across the UK at the weekend, Boris Johnson – who had previously condemned the “thuggery” by a minority that marred some demonstrations – acknowledged many of the activists’ concerns were “founded on a cold reality”.
After campaigners pulled down the statue of Mr Colston in Bristol, graffiti accusing Sir Winston Churchill of being a racist was written on a statue of the wartime prime minister in Parliament Square.
Nearly 50 London police officers were injured in clashes with demonstrators, and Mr Johnson warned legal repercussions must follow and called for people to “work peacefully, lawfully, to defeat racism”.
One of the most prominent symbols of Britain’s role in the slave trade, the statue of white imperialist Cecil Rhodes at Oxford University was attacked overnight with graffiti.
Campaigners have long called for the commemoration of Rhodes, an early architect of South African apartheid and racial supremacist, to be taken down.