Mexico’s Foreign Minister highlighted the repatriation of an important archaeological artifact known as Monument 9, belonging to the Olmec culture, which had been stolen more than 50 years ago and was in the United States. According to the Chancellor, this piece is considered the most significant archaeological figure recovered abroad in decades.
The bas-relief, which measures 1.8 meters high, 1.5 meters wide, and weighs almost a ton, is at least 2,500 years old and represents an “earth monster” whose open jaws symbolize access to the underworld, according to the researcher of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), Mario Córdova Tello.
During the delivery ceremony in Denver, Colorado, by US authorities, Foreign Minister Marcelo Ebrard highlighted the importance of this piece for Mexico, describing it as something essential that was missing and has now been recovered. Ebrard emphasized the close collaboration between both countries in this repatriation process. Through Twitter, the foreign minister pointed out that this is the most important archaeological object recovered abroad in recent decades.
Monument 9 is now on display at the Regional Museum of the Peoples of Morelos and is expected to return to its place of origin in the archaeological zone of Chalcatzingo, in the same state. This repatriation is considered a significant achievement for the preservation of Mexican cultural heritage and highlights the importance of international cooperation in the protection and recovery of archaeological objects of historical value.