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Argentina seeks priest for rights abuses

Dec. 17, 2012 at 2:00 PM

PARMA, Italy, Dec. 17 (UPI) -- Argentinean prosecutors say they are seeking an Italian priest for alleged crimes against humanity committed during Argentina's 1970s military dictatorship.

San Rafael, Argentina, prosecutors have requested the arrest of Father Franco Reverberi, 74, now living in Parma, Italy, and have asked the help of international police authorities to arrest him, the newspaper Corriere della Sera of Milan, Italy, reported.

Reverberi's name appeared on an Interpol list of suspects accused of human rights violations in Argentina from 1976 to 1981. He allegedly witnessed the torture of dissidents, doing nothing to prevent it, the Italian news agency ANSA reported Monday.

Those making the allegations say the presence of a priest made the victims' suffering more acute, the news agency said.

Reverberi denied the allegations, telling the newspaper, "The facts date back to 1976, while I was chaplain in 1980. I am a priest. I told the truth. Do I look like someone who was with (later jailed Argentinean President Jorge Rafael) Videla torturers?"

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