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Tuesday, 25 July, 2000, 17:12 GMT 18:12 UK
The Pinochet case: Timeline

BBC News Online's guide through the key landmarks in General Pinochet's extradition battle, with links to the main news stories.

July 2000

Chile's Supreme Court begins its deliberations on whether Pinochet should stand trial for alleged human rights abuses.
Judges set to decide Pinochet's fate (25 July)

Human rights lawyers urge Chile's Supreme Court to strip Augusto Pinochet of his immunity from prosecution.
Lawyers plead for Pinochet trial (21 July)

Lawyers for General Pinochet argue that he was not legally responsible for the actions of an army squad after the coup that brought him to power.
Pinochet 'innocent' of death squad crimes (20 July)

April - June 2000

Human rights activists say the release of US papers on the coup in Chile offer a new lead into the killing of American journalist Charles Horman.
New lead into Chile murder (30 June)

A former army officer in Chile admits that he saw prisoners taken off for execution at a stadium during General Pinochet's rule.
Soldier confirms Chile stadium killings (27 June)

Chilean Parliament vote unanimously in favour of a bill granting anonymity in return for information about the people who disappeared during the military rule of General Augusto Pinochet. (21 June)

Chile and Spain hold talks aimed at restoring ties damaged by the arrest of Augusto Pinochet.
Talks set to ease Pinochet rift (20 June)

Pinochet lawyers appeal against a court ruling that strips the former military ruler of his immunity from prosecution.
Pinochet appeal begins (9 June)

A Chilean court strips Pinochet of immunity from prosecution as a senator-for-life - a position he created for himself when he stood down in 1990. (5 June)
Spain hails Pinochet decision (6 June)

Lawyers who want Augusto Pinochet to be prosecuted put the case against him in court.
Pinochet hearings continue (28 April)

January - March 2000

The Chilean Congress approves a measure designed to encourage Augusto Pinochet to leave active politics.
Chile offers Pinochet new immunity (25 March)

Socialist Ricardo Lagos, who won January's election, succeeds Christian Democrat Eduardo Frei and becomes the third democratically-elected president since General Pinochet stepped down in 1990.
Pinochet opponent takes power (11 March)

Pinochet is awarded a symbolic Oscar by protesters who say he feigned sickness to avoid trial.
Pinochet awarded 'Oscar' (9 March)

State prosecutors join human rights lawyers in bringing legal action against the former Chilean military leader.
Pressure grows on Pinochet (8 March)

General Pinochet is awarded legal costs of up to $800,000, to be paid for by the UK taxpayer.
Pinochet wins legal costs (7 March)

A Chilean judge begins moves to strip the country's former military leader, General Pinochet, of his parliamentary immunity.
Pinochet faces 'death caravan' charges (7 March)

Chile's Foreign Minister, Juan Gabriel Valdes: "General Augusto Pinochet must either be prepared to face trial in Chile or else be declared insane."
Stark choice for Pinochet (5 March)

Chile's military leaders welcome Augusto Pinochet in Santiago, a day after he was freed from 17-month house arrest in the UK.
Pinochet arrives in Chile (3 March)

UK Home Secretary Jack Straw decides General Pinochet will not be extradited on torture charges and is free to leave Britain.
Pinochet set free (02 March)

France, Switzerland, Belgium and Spain lodge last-minute challenges to the medical report which declares the general unfit to stand trial.
Pinochet report challenged (22 February)

Spanish newspapers report what they say are details from the confidential medical report on Pinochet.
Pinochet 'brain damaged' (16 February)

Opponents of Pinochet gain ground in their legal battle to ensure he stands trial.
Pinochet opponents win minor victory (8 February)

Belgium announces is to go to the International Court of Justice to challenge Mr Straw's decision on General Pinochet.
Belgium begins Pinochet challenge (25 January)

The home secretary faces mounting criticism for keeping secret Pinochet's medical reports.
Straw pressured over Pinochet report (21 January)

Following results of the medical tests, Home Secretary Jack Straw says he is "minded" to release General Pinochet.
Anger over Pinochet decision (12 January)

A team of medical experts carry out tests on the general at a hospital in north London.
Pinochet completes health check (5 January)

October - December 1999

The Home Office asks General Pinochet to undergo medical tests after his third stroke raises concerns he is unfit for extradition.
Pinochet offered medical tests (5 November)

A UK court rules that General Pinochet can be extradited to Spain to stand trial for torture and human rights charges.
Way cleared for extradition (8 October)

General Pinochet is excused from appearing at a London hearing in his fight against extradition after a court hears he has recently suffered two minor strokes.
Pinochet excused court after strokes (6 October)

April - September 1999

Chile says it will bring Spain before the United Nations' top court to contest their request for the extradition of Augusto Pinochet from the UK.
Chile to fight Pinochet extradition (28 September)

A judge in Chile orders the intelligence service chief during the rule of General Pinochet to stand trial for murder.
Pinochet ally in murder trial (15 September)

Augusto Pinochet says he regards himself as a political prisoner in Britain and strongly denies any direct role in human rights abuses.
Pinochet: 'I'm a political prisoner' (18 July)

UK Home Secretary Jack Straw rules that Augusto Pinochet cannot go free, and allows Spain permission to go ahead with an extradition request.
Straw blocks freedom for Pinochet (15 April)

January - March 1999

UK Home Secretary Jack Straw is considering the latest legal complexities entangling Spanish attempts to extradite General Pinochet from Britain to face torture charges.
Straw considers Pinochet case (24 March)

Opponents and supporters of General Pinochet cautiously welcome the Law Lords' ruling.
Mixed emotions over Pinochet ruling (24 March)

General Pinochet loses his appeal for immunity from prosecution in a historic second ruling by the UK's highest court, but the Law Lords reduce the number of charges against him, and ask Home Secretary Jack Straw to reconsider the case.
Pinochet loses Lords case (24 March)

General Pinochet waits to learn if the UK's highest court is to grant him immunity from prosecution.
Pinochet's moment of truth (24 March)

Lawyers for General Pinochet make an unprecedented second appearance before the UK's highest court in a renewed attempt to block his extradition to Spain.
Judges rerun Pinochet hearing (18 January)
Pinochet 'tortures not crimes against humanity' (27 January)

General Pinochet reportedly tells his family he is resigned to dying in the UK if necessary.
I'll die in Britain, predicts Pinochet (17 January)

October 1998 - December 1998

The Chilean Government welcomes the new ruling.
Chilean Government relieved (17 December)

The UK Law Lords rule that General Pinochet can have a fresh hearing into whether he is immune from prosecution, setting aside an earlier Law Lords ruling.
Pinochet gets new hearing (17 December)

Lawyers acting for General Pinochet announce plans to challenge the UK home secretary's decision authorising the extradition process.
Pinochet to challenge Straw decision (14 December)

A letter is released from General Pinochet to the Chilean people which he describes as his "political testament".
Pinochet's letter to Chile (12 December)

The Chilean Government announces a series of measures taken following the UK's decision not to send General Pinochet back to Chile.
Chile cuts contacts with UK (12 December)

General Pinochet makes a brief appearance in court, during which he refuses to recognise the right to be tried by any court outside Chile.
Defiant Pinochet blasts 'Spanish lies' (11 December)

UK Home Secretary Jack Straw rejects appeals by General Augusto Pinochet's lawyers and allows the extradition case to go ahead.
Straw gives go-ahead for extradition bid (9 December)

The UK's highest court, the Law Lords, rules that General Pinochet can face an attempt to extradite him to Spain, dismissing an earlier ruling by the High Court that as a former head of state he is immune from prosecution.
Lords rule against Pinochet (25 November)
Nail-biter in the Lords (25 November)

In his first public statement since his arrest, General Pinochet vows to fight extradition attempts "with all my spirit".
Defiant Pinochet breaks his silence (8 November)
Statement in full (8 November)

General Pinochet is bailed at London's High Court while the House of Lords decides if he has immunity from prosecution.
Pinochet bailed (30 October)

General Pinochet succeeds in a legal challenge against his arrest and detention in the UK at the High Court in London, arguing that his arrest was unlawful.
Pinochet arrest ruled unlawful (28 October)

In Chile, news of the arrest is greeted with disbelief, and a mixture of anger and delight.
Chileans react with disbelief (18 October)
Call for calm after Chile protest (20 October)

General Augusto Pinochet is arrested in London on a warrant from Spain requesting his extradition on murder charges.
Pinochet arrested (17 October)

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Links to more The Pinochet file stories are at the foot of the page.


Links to more The Pinochet file stories