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Montevideo, September 19th 2018 - 15:02 UTC

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Thursday, August 24th 2000 - 21:00 UTC
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Di Tella in trouble

Former Argentine Foreign Secretary Guido Di Tella and Defence Minister Antonio Ermán González and their Deputies, were formally indicted this week for their alleged participation in the illegal sale of Argentine weapons to Ecuador and Croatia. Federal Judge Jorge Urso said that Mr. Di Tella was indicted for nor revealing secret documents regarding the shipments. Defence Minister González was embargoed in 400.000 US dollars and Mr. Di Tella 50.000 US dollars. Between 1991 and 1995 the Menem administration apparently sold 6.500 tons of weapons to Croatia and Ecuador. At the time a United Nations arms embargo to Croatia was effective, (because of the Balkans conflict), and Ecuador was involved in air and land combats with Peru involving border disputes. A previous Defence Minister and the Commanders of the Argentine Air Force and Army were also indicted earlier in the year. Menem administration officials indicate that the weapons were originally sold to other countries but the buyers were responsible for the diversion.

Pinochet trial in October

In an attempt to ease tension Chilean Magistrate Juan Guzmán indicated this week that former dictator Augusto Pinochet who was stripped of his legislative immunity will be questioned in trial next October 9th. The judicial decision apparently was influenced by the fact that September is a particular sensitive month for Chileans who that month celebrate Independence Day, Army Day and another anniversary of the bloody 1973 coup that overthrew President Salvador Allende replacing him with a military Junta headed by General Pinochet. The decision also follows a public speech before President Ricardo Lagos where Chilean Army Commander Ricardo Inzurieta said that the recent Supreme Court sentence to strip Senator for life Pinochet of his privileges "deeply injures the Army's soul", adding that the current generation will not be able to judge objectively events belonging to the recent past of the country. The Pinochet defence and followers have also began an aggressive campaign to press for his absolution denying the general was directly involved in human rights violations.Among other activities Pinochet part

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