-- The names of 9,000 people who disappeared
during the Argentine military dictatorship were presented to a
Spanish judge Monday, sharply widening his inquiry into
state-sponsored terrorism that until recently listed a much smaller fraction
of the estimated 30,000 people who died.
Six leaders of
the Argentine Workers' Central, that country's second-largest
trade union, gave the judge the expanded list of victims.
The union leaders
also submitted the names of 896 military officers whom
they blamed for the kidnappings and killings of leftists during military rule
from 1976 to 1983.
A person close
to the investigation by the judge, Baltasar Garzon, said the
new list, if fully verified by the court, would represent an important advance
in the case, "since the Argentine authorities won't cooperate" in identifying
laws in the 1980s tried to halt criminal inquiries. The
Argentine government reported that at least 9,000 people were killed or
disappeared during military rule, but human rights groups put the number of
deaths at 30,000.
In 1996 Garzon
began investigating the disappearance or killing of Spanish
citizens in Argentina, starting with a list of 40 names. It gradually increased
to 600 names, including descendants of Spaniards, and the University
Federation of Argentina later gave the judge a list of 2,200 teachers and
students who had disappeared, said victims' lawyers.
government and some Spanish officials have contended that
Spain has no jurisdiction. But since the judge issued international arrest
warrants for 11 former Argentine military officials in October, it is risky for
them to travel outside Argentina, Spanish lawyers said. The judge has also
charged about 100 other former and active Argentine military and police
The union leaders
said they presented documents to the judge Monday
alleging that a half-dozen large companies, including a Ford automobile plant
near Buenos Aires, had been used at times as detention centers for
workers considered dissidents. The unions said 68 percent of the
dictatorship's victims were workers.