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Judi Lynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Jun-30-10 12:17 PM
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Former Argentina dictator to go on trial in rights abuse case
Former Argentina dictator to go on trial in rights abuse case
By the CNN Wire Staff
June 30, 2010 -- Updated 1709 GMT (0109 HKT)

Former Argentine dictator Gen. Reynaldo Benito
Bignone has one conviction and faces new charges

Jorge Rafael Videla accused of kidnapping and torture
Former army corps head also will go on trial
Right-wing dictatorship ruled from 1976-83
Up to 30,000 people were tortured or killed during "dirty war"

Buenos Aires, Argentina (CNN) -- A former Argentinian dictator and an ex-army chief are scheduled to go on trial this week on charges of human rights abuses during the nation's right-wing rule from 1976-83, the government's Judicial Information Center said.

Jorge Rafael Videla was among the coup leaders who overthrew then-President Isabela Martinez de Peron in March 1976. He ruled as dictator until 1981. Also scheduled to go on trial this week in a separate proceeding will be Luciano Benjamin Menendez, former head of the Third Army Corps. He is accused of violating the human rights of four people.

There are 31 defendants in the two trials, the Judicial Information Center said on its website Tuesday.

Another former dictator, Gen. Reynaldo Benito Bignone, was sentenced in April to 25 years in prison for kidnapping and torturing 56 people. He ruled Argentina from June 1982 until the nation's return to democracy in December 1983. Bignone, 82, faces two other trials: in the abduction and disappearance of doctors and nurses at the Hospital Posada and of two soldiers when he was head of the Military College.

Up to 30,000 students, labor leaders, intellectuals and leftists who ran afoul of the dictatorship because of their political views disappeared or were held in secret jails and torture centers during the nation's eight-year "Dirty War."

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