- The Washington Times - Monday, October 30, 2006


Pinochet, now 90, put under house arrest

SANTIAGO — Former dictator Augusto Pinochet was put under house arrest yesterday on new charges in connection with the disappearances of political prisoners during his 1973-1990 rule after Chile’s military toppled elected Socialist President Salvador Allende.

The charges stem from reputed torture at Villa Grimaldi, a secret detention center where Michelle Bachelet, now president of Chile, was once held with other political prisoners. Gen. Pinochet, 90, was charged Friday with the torture and disappearances of people in state custody who opposed his rule.

Judge Alejandro Solis charged he was responsible for 36 cases of “forced disappearances,” a murder and 23 cases of torture committed in the jail. The ex-dictator is also under investigation for reputed tax evasion and fraud as a result of the discovery of undeclared bank accounts in the United States.


Voters reject unlimited re-election

BUENOS AIRES — Voters rejected a provincial governor’s bid for the right to seek re-election, dealing a political blow to a key ally of President Nestor Kirchner.

Gov. Carlos Rovira of northern province Misiones, who sought to change election laws to permit unlimited re-election, was defeated in Sunday’s ballot by an opposition alliance led by an elderly Catholic bishop. Current law limits governors to two terms.

Results showed the opposition won 56.6 percent of the vote to Mr. Rovira’s 43.4 percent, and national newspapers termed the governor’s defeat a setback for his ally, Mr. Kirchner. An editorial in Clarin, the country’s No. 1 daily, said Mr. Kirchner “will pay a higher price for the overwhelming defeat than for the one he was already going to pay, even with a victory, for intervening in a process neither noble nor transparent.”


Man held in death of ex-boxing champ

LIVINGSTON — A 20-year-old man was arrested in connection with the killing of former heavyweight champion Trevor Berbick, who was bludgeoned and left to die in a church courtyard next to his family’s home in a rural hamlet.

Several residents of the remote farming community in Norwich district said the suspect was involved in a land dispute with the troubled boxer. Les Green, a Scottish detective appointed assistant police commissioner of the violence-wracked nation this year, refused to identify the man before his arraignment, which has not been scheduled.

“We have some very good information from witnesses, and we have recovered a weapon we believe was used in the assault,” Mr. Green said. Police refused to say whether others were suspected. Mr. Berbick was best remembered as boxing legend Muhammad Ali’s final opponent in 1981.

Weekly notes …

French President Jacques Chirac warmly welcomed yesterday the weekend re-election of Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva as president of Brazil, and reaffirmed his support for Brazil’s bid to join the U.N. Security Council. “I want to tell you, with my full friendship, how glad I am of your success,” Mr. Chirac said in a message to “Lula” that highlighted the Brazilian leader’s efforts to make his country more socially equitable. … Maya Indian Cenorio Colli, 83, gazed lovingly at his wife’s long brown hair yesterday and recalled how carefully she combed it when she was still alive. Then he went back to cleaning her skull and every bone in her grave on Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula during the annual family reunion with the dead in a tradition dating back centuries,

From wire dispatches and staff reports

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