The Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo have revealed that they are ready to announce the 121st grandchild recovered since Argentina’s last military dictatorship.
The grandchild, now 40, is the son of Ana María Lanzilloto and Domingo Menna. Both were disappeared during the last dictatorship. He has an older brother, Ramiro, and is the cousin of Délfor Brizuela, the secretary of human rights for La Rioja province.
The 121st grandchild – whose identity has not yet been made public – was born in a concentration camp in 1976 and raised by different parents. When the Abuelas suggested that he might be the son of a disappeared couple, he told them that he was certainly not. Nonetheless, he agreed to take a DNA test, which ultimately confirmed his identity.
Menna, born in Italy, and Lanzilloto, of La Rioja, lived in Villa Martelli. Menna was active in the People’s Revolutionary Army (ERP). On 19th June, 1976, Menna and other members of the ERP were captured. The same day, a pregnant Lanzilloto was also taken by the military. Then two years old, Ramiro was left an orphan.
Menna and Lanzilloto were taken to Campo de Mayo, where Menna was reportedly executed. It is believed that Lanzilloto gave birth to her second son in the camp. There has been no news of her since.
Lanzilloto’s sister, María Cristina, was also active in the ERP. She and her husband were captured on 16th November, 1976, and her remains were discovered in a mass grave in 2005.
The formal announcement, scheduled for today, was postponed due to the death of a family member of Abuelas president Estela de Carlotto. She confirmed yesterday that the grandchild was not planning to appear at the event as “he is processing his new situation.” His brother, Ramiro, was scheduled to be there.
The Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo estimate that around 500 babies were born in captivity and abducted during the 1976-83 dictatorship.