Chile: suicide follows ‘dirty war’ conviction

One day after Chile's Supreme Court sentenced him to 20 years in prison for a "dirty war" crime, retired Gen. Hernán Ramírez Rurange shot himself in the head in his apartment in Santiago on Aug. 13. Ramírez was convicted as intellectual author of the "disappearance" of Eugenio Berríos, a chemist with the National Intelligence Directorate (DINA). Berrios disappeared in 1992 after fleeing to Uruguay to avoid testifying in assassination cases  carried out under Operation Condor. Among the cases at issue was apparently that of former foreign minister Orlando Letelier, slain by a car-bomb attack in Washington DC in 1976. (EFE, 24Horas, Aug. 14; TeleSUR, La Trecera, Aug 13)

On July 22, a Chilean judge formally charged 10 retired military officers in the abduction and murder of popular folk singer Victor Jara and former military police chief Littre Quiroga Carvajal. Both were seized in the immediate aftermath of the Sept. 11, 1973 coup that brought Gen. Augusto Pinotchet to power. Quiroga Carvajal had been commander of the Gendarmería under the ousted President Salvador Allende. (DW, AP, The Guardian, July 23; Diario Uchile, July 22)

  1. Chile: ex-soldier charged with murder after radio confesion

    A former conscript in the Chilean army was charged with murder after confessing on a live radio phone-in to participating in the deaths of 18 opponents of the late dictator Augusto Pinochet. Guillermo Reyes Rammsy, 62, was arrested Dec. 11 and charged over the 1973 murder of two members of Chile's Socialist Party. The extraordinary confession came two days earlier, when he called in to popular talk show "Chacotero Sentimental" (Loving Betrayal) and told host Roberto Artiagoitía that he was considering suicide. (The Guardian)

  2. Chile: ex-officers get prison for ‘Operation Condor’ crimes

    Chilean judge Mario Carroza ordered 20 former agents of Chile's infamous National Intelligence Direction (DINA) to serve prison time for their roles in the kidnapping and murder of 12 victims of Operation Condor. (TeleSur)