Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo

Among the "disappeared" (see previous post) were pregnant mothers whose babies, once born, were then illegally adopted by military families. Ramón Camps, a general responsible for orchastrating the interrogation and disappearance of 5,000 people, justified the appropriation of newborns from their imprisoned mothers "because subversive parents will raise subversive children."

The task of locating these children and restoring their lost identity has been going on since the restoration of democracy in 1983. It has been estimated that there are as many as as many as 500 such kidnapped children.

So since 1977 a group known as Las Madres de Plaza de Mayo (“The Mothers of May Plaza”) have been demanding the return of these kidnapped children. They are the mothers of the desaparecidos, and hence the grandmothers of the abducted children. So far 87 have been found. (1)

The group was formed by mothers who met each oher whilst they were seaching for their missing children who were abducted during by agents of the government during "The Process of National Reorganization" or El Proceso. Three of the fourteen founders of the association have also "disappeared."

For years they have convened at 3.30pm every Thursday at Plaza de Mayo to walk around the central monument - wearing white head scarves to symbolize the blankets of the lost babies - demanding “that the children who were kidnapped as a method of political repression be restored to their legitimate families.”

Today they recognise that the the current government is not indifferent or hostile to the fate of the desaparecidos, hence the Madres no longer march in resistence to the cause of their disappeared children, but they still meet at 3.30pm every Thrurday to march in pursuit of action regarding other social causes.

Further reading