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40 years ago, they murdered Victor Jara. Now, arrest warrants are out.

Victor Jara was a writer and singer of love songs.

He was also a supporter of the Chilean president, Salvador Allende. When Allende was overthrown in a US-aided coup, Victor Jara was dragged off with thousands of others to a football stadium, where he was tortured and murdered by the victorious troops of General Pinochet.

Victor’s hands were broken before he died and his body was flung onto a street. His English wife, Joan, has campaigned ever since for justice.

victor joan jara

A judge in Santiago has now ordered the arrest of eight named army officers on suspicion of Jara’s murder. Watch the BBC report here.

One of the suspects, Pedro Barrientos Nunez, now lives happily in the United States. An international arrest warrant has been issued. The likelihood of his extradition to face justice is lamentably small. We may need to raise our voices in protest. A Facebook campaign has started.

victor jara


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  1. There are many of us out there who will never forget! Thank you for this.

  2. Por Fin! What wonderful news for all of us who new this amazing activist and singer. And for joan the grace and composure all these years to fight for the truth

  3. This is indeed great news. I have been following the developments in Chile very closely in the past 6 years and we are about to release a film about the solidarity (in Chile and outside of Chile) that kept Victor’s memory alive and the long struggle for justice. The film explores the post coup period of efforts to recover Victor from clandestine existence. Our film website is There is a trailer and lots of other info about Victor. Thanks for raising awareness about the life and music of Victor Jara. — John Summa

  4. Per Christopher Hoen says:

    Victor Jara was killed forty years ago, but his spirit will never die in the true hearts of human beings. Once , think it was beginning of march 1973, half a year before the military coup, I had the priveledge to watch him and several other chilean folk-musicians perform in accordance to an election coming up. The concert place was very intimate, I remember it almost like a stable, and Victor Jara, whom I by time of arrival never had heard of, made a deep impression on me. Sitting in his blue shirt, so relaxed and friendly, it was as if the man and the guitar was “one body”; trancended into a sacred unity.
    After the concert we left by car. On our way back we passed the national football/soccer stadion…. a silent, dark, empty bastion in the night.
    The nice, beatyful young woman who invited us to the concert, was a 22 year-old journalist named
    (hope I spelled it right) and if there is anybody out there who knows her – or – her destiny- please contact me.

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