- Associated Press - Friday, March 25, 2016

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The Latest on New Orleans’ plans to remove four Confederate monuments (all times local):

12:30 p.m.

The city of New Orleans’ plans to remove four prominent Confederate monuments have been placed on hold by a federal appeals court.

A three-judge panel of the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals granted an injunction Friday blocking the city from removing the monuments until an appeal is heard. The judges gave no reasons.

Opponents of removing the monuments had so far failed to convince state or federal district judges to stop the removal, approved last year by the City Council.

At the 5th Circuit, they argued in briefs that the complex process of removing the large monuments could cause damage that could not be repaired if the courts ultimately rule that they should stay in place.

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8 a.m.

Backlash against a plan to remove prominent Confederate monuments in New Orleans has been tinged by death threats, intimidation and even what may have been the intentional torching of a contractor’s Lamborghini.

For now, at least, things have gotten so nasty the city hasn’t found a contractor willing to bear the risk of tearing down the monuments. The city doesn’t have its own equipment to move them and is now in talks to find a company, even discussing doing the work at night to avoid further tumult.

Initially, it appeared the monuments would be removed quickly after the majority black City Council in December approved the mayor’s plan to take the monuments down, part of a wave of anti-Confederate sentiment.

The monuments include towering figures of Gens. Robert E. Lee and P.G.T. Beauregard.

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