Jan 31, 2010

Juárez mayor plans monument to women slain in border city

Juárez mayor plans monument to women slain in border city

Posted: 01/30/2010 12:00:00 AM MST

Diana Washington Valdez/El Paso Times

Juárez Mayor Jose Reyes Ferriz said the city is calling on artists nationwide to submit proposals for a monument to memorialize the city's murdered women.
Such a monument could focus on the eight victims whose bodies were found in 2001 in a cotton field on Ejercito Nacional across from the Association of Maquiladoras.
The Inter-American Court of Human Rights ordered the Mexican government earlier this year to erect a monument to dignify the memory of the victims.
Families of victims had complained that Mexican authorities treated them with contempt and disrespected the victims during the failed investigation to solve the murders.
Early in the investigation, Chihuahua state authorities misidentified several of the eight bodies and accused two innocent men of the killings.
Reyes said that the city would donate land for the monument and that the victims' families would be asked to review and approve the final rendition. The proposed site for the monument is at Ejercito Nacional and Francisco Villareal streets.
"It must be something that represents what we feel about the deaths and that acknowledges our past errors, which were real and caused us pain. It must also demonstrate our commitment to never let this happen again in Juárez," Reyes said.
He said it could take up to nine months to complete the monument.
The mayor also said the city is participating in the Alba alert system (similar to the U.S. Amber alert) to publicize high-risk disappearances.