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A mystery stone sculpture that someone created along the Chikuma River in Nagano Prefecture has left some residents puzzled and others seeing it as a good opportunity to generate interest in their mountain community.

The sculpture, which is now about 2 meters tall, first began to take shape on the spot four years ago. But no one has ever seen the person who is making it, according to the Chunichi Shimbun and other media.

Local authorities are preventing people, especially children, from coming near the stone object because they may sustain cuts by sharp edges.

“I’ve never seen its sculptor. The person may be working on it in the middle of the night,” a man in the neighborhood was quoted by the Chunichi Shimbun as saying.

He said there are always visitors around during the daytime, thus it would be hard for the sculptor to remain unseen.

Another resident welcomed the mysterious sculpture, saying it has generated a local buzz. “Many people want it to remain there,” the man was quoted as telling the Chunichi Shimbun.

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