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The World

June 19, 1987

Three federal courts in Argentina ruled constitutional a controversial new law that grants immunity to most officers accused of human rights abuses during the "dirty war" of 1976-'83 when thousands were kidnaped, tortured or killed. At least nine military and security officers were freed from indictment under the so-called "due obedience" law, which bars junior officers from prosecution if they can prove they were following superiors' orders. President Raul Alfonsin, who signed the law last week, proposed it as a way of cutting down on trials and soothing tensions in the military.

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