LATIN AMERICA

Mothers of stolen babies are terrorists, says Videla

Former dictator protesting "unjust sentence" given to him for "contribution to national harmony"

Madrid -
General Jorge Rafael Videla during his trial.
General Jorge Rafael Videla during his trial.AFP

Argentina's former dictator Jorge Videla, who is on trial on for kidnapping 33 babies from parents who disappeared during the country's Dirty War period, on Tuesday called the infants' mothers "terrorists," saying that he protested any "unjust sentence" given to him for his "contribution in the achievement of national harmony."

Videla, 86, is already serving a life sentence for the executions of 31 prisoners in Córdoba province when he was head of the military junta that ruled Argentina from 1976 to 1983. Videla served as head of the junta until 1981.

"All those who gave birth, whom I respect as mothers, were active militants in the machinery of terrorism. They used their children as human shields," the ex-general said.

Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo, a human rights group attempting to find people kidnapped during that period, estimates that some 500 babies were taken from their parents and adopted by families close to the regime.

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