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BALTIMORE (AP) — The Maryland Historical Trust is reiterating its stance that Baltimore officials lacked the authority to take down three monuments to the Confederacy, and is asking the city to work together to secure a safe place for them to be relocated.

In a letter dated last Friday, trust director Elizabeth Hughes wrote that the city did not have the right to remove the statues.

Hughes says that while the trust will not concede that it lacks authority to re-install the statues, the best way forward is to work cooperatively toward a mutual resolution that likely includes relocating the monuments.

Mayor Catherine Pugh ordered the statues removed in August. She said her decision was justified because she was worried about public safety after protests over Confederate statues in other states turned violent.