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Last Updated: Wednesday, 25 August, 2004, 13:58 GMT 14:58 UK
Pinochet to testify in Jara case
Víctor Jara
Víctor Jara's music was popular throughout South America
A Chilean judge has ordered former military ruler Augusto Pinochet to testify in writing in the murder case of singer and composer Victor Jara.

Mr Jara was allegedly tortured and killed shortly after the military coup in September 1973 in a sports stadium, in the capital, Santiago.

Prosecutors hope to determine who was in charge of the stadium at the time.

The judge also ordered a number of former army generals to provide testimony concerning the case.

'He kept singing'

The judge's decision came as General Pinochet faces an investigation into allegations that he hid millions of dollars in secret bank accounts while in power.

The Chilean Supreme Court is also expected to rule on an appeal by his lawyers following a court decision to strip him of his immunity from prosecution in connection with Operation Condor - a drive against opponents of South American military regimes.

Mr Jara was one of the founding fathers of Chile's New Song movement and a supporter of President Salvador Allende, who was overthrown in the coup.

Mr Jara, who was 38 when he was tortured and killed, was reportedly held with other people who the military considered "dangerous".

Other prisoners were later quoted as saying that he did not stop singing even when guards burnt and broke his hands.

His wife, Joan, left the country in secret after his death with tapes of his music, which became widely known internationally.

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Profile: Augusto Pinochet
28 May 04  |  Americas
Timeline: Chile
25 May 04  |  Country profiles

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