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Paraguayan Presidential Candidate Killed in Helicopter Crash

"Reflected Aurora" by Alex Conu ( (Courtesy:
"Reflected Aurora" by Alex Conu ( (Courtesy:
A controversial presidential candidate in Paraguay has been killed in a helicopter crash.

Authorities say Lino Oviedo and two others died when their copter went down in a storm Saturday in northern Paraguay. Despite the report of severe weather, some Oviedo supporters call the crash suspicious.

Oviedo was a former head of the Paraguayan army, and took part in the 1989 coup that overthrew longtime dictator Alfredo Stroessner.

He fled the country in 1996 after the government accused him of plotting another coup. While in exile in 1999, he was suspected of masterminding the assassination of a Paraguayan vice president .

Oviedo later returned to Paraguay and spent time in prison for the 1996 coup plot, but was cleared of all other charges.

Paraguayans will elect a new president in April. The senate tossed President Fernando Lugo out of office in June after he ordered police to evict peasant farmers squatting on private land. Eleven farmers and six police were killed. The farmers claimed the land was illegally acquired.
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