Catholic bishops deny role in Argentine junta

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Associated Press

Posted on November 9, 2012 at 5:34 PM

Updated Saturday, Nov 10 at 2:33 AM

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Roman Catholic bishops in Argentina deny claims by a former dictator that the church was complicit in crimes committed by the 1976-1983 military dictatorship.

Argentine bishops say they are open to a deep review of the church's role during those years. They are also asking for forgiveness, as they did 12 years ago, for the behavior of some members of the church during the regime

Former Argentine dictator Jorge Videla said earlier this year that those who ran the church at the time were accomplices to criminal acts carried out in a government-sponsored crackdown on leftist dissidents during the so-called "dirty war."

Human rights groups estimate up to 30,000 people were killed during Argentina's dictatorship.

Videla is serving a life sentence for kidnapping, torture and murder.

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