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Statue of Mata Hari (Leeuwarden, Netherlands)

    Mata Hari (Margaretha Geertruida Zelle) (b. Leeuwarden, Netherlands 7 August 1876 – d. 15 October 1917, Vincennes, France) was a Dutch exotic dancer and courtesan. She moved to Paris in 1903 where she first performed as a circus horse rider and posed as an artist’s model. She began to gain visibility as an exotic dancer and had a successful debut as Mata Hari in 1905. In 1916, during World War I she was blackmailed and made a spy for France. Since the Netherlands were neutral during the war, she was allowed to freely cross the border. A few months later, she was arrested and accused of spying for Germany. She claimed innocence, but was executed by a firing squad on 15 October 1917, the French Army needing a scapegoat. The statue commemorates her by highlighting her dancer career.

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    Address: Over de Kelders 24C, 8911 JG Leeuwarden, Netherlands