Mexicans puzzled by Azerbaijan leader monument

AP News
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Posted: Oct 01, 2012 3:15 PM

MEXICO CITY (AP) — A life-size bronze statue of late Azerbaijan president Geidar Aliev on Mexico City's main boulevard has some Mexicans upset.

Why has a memorial to an authoritarian leader from the Caucasus been erected within sight of Mexico's bicentennial monument, and down the street on Reforma Avenue from a statue of India's Mahatma Gandhi?

It turns out that Azerbaijan contributed millions of dollars to landscape and remodel the park where the monument is located, as well as another public square in downtown Mexico City.

Despite Azerbaijan's generous gift, protesters say that a man who ruled such a far-away land with such a heavy hand shouldn't be on a boulevard decorated with statues to Mexican and foreign heroes.