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The World

Chilean officials have asked the Supreme Court to appoint a special judge to investigate a secretive German colony accused by human rights groups and former members of abuse and torture. The group, Colonia Dignidad, is a sprawling farm community about 210 miles south of Santiago. Government sources said officials made the request after receiving an appeal last week from West German Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher. Last year, lower courts rejected two similar requests, citing a lack of evidence. The colony, established in 1961 by a group of West German Free Baptists, has about 300 residents, most of them Germans. The colony has denied the charges.


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