Photo: La Verdad

After months of restoration work costing about 100,000 pesos, the Monumento a la Madre is nearly ready to be unveiled.

The historic Centro statue, a tribute to motherhood, was targeted in late September during a feminist rally that left it defaced with spray paint. Ever since, the Calle 60 monument has been obscured with a wooden wall. Rescue work began Oct. 7.

Merida Mayor Renán Barrera Concha said that INAH’s work will take just a few more weeks after a few “adjustments.”

A raucous demonstration, marking International Safe Abortion Day, was attended by over 150 women, many disguised with green bandanas.

The choice of Parque Maternidad for the rally was not accidental.

“Enough of congratulating the girls and adolescents who were forced into motherhood,” said one protestor. Abortion is a criminal act in Mexico except in Mexico City and, more recently, Oaxaca.

Most states in the country allow the procedure only if the life of the woman is in danger. Otherwise, women face jail time for illegally aborting a fetus.

The vandalism defaces a marble reproduction of a Paris statue by Alfred Lenoir. The statue was donated to the city in 1928 by the League of Social Action.

The protests, which were nationwide and coinciding with International Safe Abortion Day, came after Oaxaca approved a bill to legalize abortion last week, making it only the second region in the country, after Mexico City, to permit the procedure.

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