Church denies connection to vandalism at Otomi site in Mexico

Dancers from an Otomí village in Mexico. Photo by Maunus

The Jehovah’s Witnesses in Mexico are denying their followers were responsible for the desecration of site held sacred by the Otomi people.

According to news reports, vandals destroyed at least a dozen stone structures used as altars at the 7,000-year-old site, known as Mayonikha. A professor who visited the area after hearing about the incident told the Associated Press that some Jehovah’s Witnesses admitted they were responsible because the ceremonies performed went against their beliefs.

“[I]n their words, they said it was piggish, garbage that wasn’t in the Bible, and so they went to clear out what was offensive to their God," Luis Perez Lugo told the AP.

A spokesperson for the church, however, told the AP that the story was "false."

It's not clear when the vandalism occurred. Perez Lugo visited the area in May and got his information after talking to people in a nearby village.

Get the Story:
Ancient temple of Mexican Otomi Indians damaged (AP 6/28)
Jehovah's Witnesses Destroy Ancient Indigenous Temple in Mexico (teleSUR 6/28)
Testigos de Jehová destruyen sitio arqueológico y santuario otomí (La Jornada 6/27)