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Juan María Bordaberry Arocena

Bordaberry Arocena, Juan María, 1928–2011, Uruguayan politician. Born into a wealthy and politically conservative family, he was elected (1962) senator as a member of the National party. Switching to the Colorado party, he served as agriculture minister from 1969 to 1971 when he was elected president. His presidency was marked by violent conflict between the government and the leftist Tupamaros guerrillas. He suspended civil liberties and ordered the imprisonment, torture, and murder of opposition figures. In 1973 the military demanded more power and, faced with the threat of having to leave office, Bordaberry assumed dictatorial powers, dissolved parliament, suspended the constitution, outlawed political parties, and further curtailed civil liberties. These concessions were not enough for the military, which ousted him in 1976. In 2006 Bordaberry was arrested and charged with participating in a coup and crimes against humanity; he was sentenced in 2010 to 30 years in prison and died under house arrest.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

See more Encyclopedia articles on: Uruguay History: Biographies

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