Page last updated at 19:10 GMT, Wednesday, 27 May 2009 20:10 UK

Charge over Chile singer's death

Victor Jara
Victor Jara was one of Chile's best-known singing stars

A judge in Chile has charged a former soldier in connection with the killing, more than 35 years ago, of the popular singer Victor Jara.

The accused man, Jose Adolfo Paredes Marquez, who is now 54, was an army conscript at the time.

Victor Jara was among thousands of people rounded up in the early days of General Augusto Pinochet's right-wing military coup.

He was taken to a stadium in the capital, Santiago, tortured and shot.

Judicial authorities reopened the investigation into Victor Jara's death last year, after new evidence was presented by his family.

His widow, Joan, reacting to the court's decision, said: "There are other people responsible - those who ordered the torture and the execution."

Broken hands

Victor Jara and thousands of other people were arrested and taken to the main football stadium in Santiago soon after Gen Pinochet seized power, following the military coup which ousted the elected leftist president Salvador Allende in September, 1973.

Once there, soldiers broke and burned Victor Jara's hands so that he was unable to play his guitar, witnesses say. He was then shot and killed.

The 38-year-old singer was one of the founding fathers of Chile's New Song movement, and a supporter of President Allende.

More than 3,000 were killed or disappeared during the period of military rule in Chile, which lasted from 1973 to 1990.

General Pinochet died in 2006, at the age of 91.

Print Sponsor

New probe into Victor Jara murder
04 Jun 08 |  Americas

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific