Estela de Carlotto

Estela de Carlotto is one of the most prominent figures in contemporary Argentine history, recognized for her activism in the field of human rights, as head of the Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo.

In late 1977, during the last military dictatorship (1976-1983), one of her daughters, Laura Estela Carlotto, who was pregnant at the time, was kidnapped and “disappeared”.

The disappearance, the prefered repression instrument of the Junta, hit 30,000 people of all ages and social conditions who were illegally deprived of their liberty and tortured.

In that context, hundreds of children kidnapped along with their parents or born in illegal detention centers where young pregnant women had been taken, were snatched and given over to people who pretended to be their parents, and raised them under fake names.

Marcha por el 24 de Marzo en Plaza de Mayo
Foto Juano Tesone

Thanks to the testimony of the survivors of the concentration camp, she was able to reconstruct that her daughter had given birth to a child, that her grandson had been appropriated and that her identity had changed.

She looked for him for almost 36 years. August 5, 2014, after a DNA evaluation conducted voluntarily by the young man involved.

Ignacio Guido Montoya Carlotto was identified and became number 114 on the list of recovered grandchildren.

So far, his uninterrupted work has meant that 130 children have recovered their identity (today they are adults between 36 and 42 years old).