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Last Updated: Monday, 4 August, 2003, 04:54 GMT 05:54 UK
Extra bodies found in Chile grave
By Clinton Porteous
In Santiago

A Chilean judge investigating human rights abuses under the former military government has discovered three extra bodies at a common grave, casting fresh doubts over admissions made by the military.

Relatives of the victims of the military regime marching in Santiago
Thousands of people were killed under Pinochet's regime
The armed forces had said the bodies of only six Communist Party members were buried at the site under the former military government of General Augusto Pinochet.

The revelation comes at an embarrassing time for the armed forces.

The government of President Ricardo Lagos in the next fortnight will release a new system to accelerate investigations of human rights abuses.

Next month will be the 30th anniversary of the coup that installed General Pinochet.

His military government claimed up to 3,000 lives over 17 years.

And, the discovery of the extra body supports criticism that the military is still failing to deliver accurate information.

It is also proof of the slowness of the system.

Military chiefs presented a report 18 months ago on the fate of 180 victims.

It said most of the bodies were dumped at sea, but it said 30 had been buried.

In this case it described a deserted hilltop and listed six victims by name. Somehow it failed to mention three extra bodies.

Chile drops Pinochet trial
01 Jul 02  |  Americas
Court arrests Chilean general
08 Oct 02  |  Americas
Country profile: Chile
05 Jun 03  |  Country profiles

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