BUENOS AIRES (Sep. 15)
Leaders of the Peronist movement repudiated anti-Semitism and praised Argentine-Israeli friendship in a meeting her with representative of the Argentine Jewish community, the World Jewish Congress reported today.
According to the Latin American branch of the WJC, the denunciation of anti-Semitism was made during a reception for the leadership of the Justicialista (Peronist) Party given by the Delegacion de Asociaciones Israelitas Argentinas (DAIA). The DAIA is the central representative body of Argentine Jewry and the WJC affiliate here.
The reception, held at the initiative of the Justicialista Party, was hosted by DAIA in line with ongoing contacts it maintains with the various political groupings in the country, with a view of ascertaining their stands with regard to issues of Jewish interest, a WJC spokesman explained.
RESPONSE TO A STINGING REBUKE
The pronouncements of the Peronist leadership came in response to a stinging rebuke made in remarks by Dr. Sion Cohen Imach, president of DAIA, who condemned the harmful activity of certain groups and circles within both the Peronist and other parties which had encouraged anti-Jewish incitements.
Deolindo Felipe Bittel, the party’s first vice president and its chief leader in the country, replied that at the grassroots level, “where Peronism finds its nourishment, the attitude of those mentally disturbed people who try to aggravate you has no significance whatsoever.” He added: “I assure you that Peronism never had in mind any kind of offense to the Jewish community or to the state of Israel.”
Dr. Italo Argentino Luder, the party’s candidate for the Presidency of Argentina, said that he “agree totally with the worlds of Mr. Felipe Bittel.” He stressed “that Justicialismo professes a deep respect for the communities that contribute to the bases of our nation” and accordingly,” Justicialismo never furthered any anti-Semitic attitudes.”
Argentino Luder added: “We recognize the rights of the State of Israel to maintain its integrity and its historic continuity and if any (Argentine) President directly showed his closeness to the State of Israel it was President Peron. In the future we will maintain the same foreign policy.”