The Testimony of
Former Navy Sergeant Victor Ibanez
The Scilingo full story from TIME magazine
Date: Thu, 27 Apr 1995 17:33:15 GMT,
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) -- A second former military man has admitted taking part in "death flights" in which political prisoners were thrown alive into the Atlantic in the 1970s.
The former military regime held at least 2,000 prisoners at Campo de Mayo army base in Buenos Aires during the "Dirty War," and many were thrown into the ocean after interrogation, said former army Sgt. Victor Ibanez.
"At times there were 20 prisoners, even 300," he said in an interview published Monday in the newspaper La Prensa. ``When there were too many'' the prisoners were placed aboard army cargo planes and helicopters and flown out to sea.
"We flew at very low altitude and the flights were never registered," Ibanez said. "Prisoners were injected with a very strong drug, they were brought over to the door and two officers threw them out."
Two months ago, retired Navy Capt. Adolfo Scilingo broke two decades of armed forces silence by saying that prisoners were stripped, drugged and thrown into the Atlantic from navy aircraft between 1976 and 1978.
At least 9,000 people disappeared during the military government's campaign against leftists and dissidents between 1976 and 1983. Human rights groups put the figure at nearer 30,000.
President Carlos Menem has urged participants in the repression not to make public confessions to avoid "rubbing salt in old wounds."
There was no immediate reaction to Ibanez' claims from the government or the armed forces.
Ibanez said clandestine detention centers at Camp de Mayo were destroyed shortly before a delegation from the human rights group Amnesty International visited Argentina after the restoration of democratic government in 1983.
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