Argentina’s foreign minister has said his country will not go ahead with a deal to sell a small nuclear reactor to Syria if Israel objects.
Foreign Minister Guido di Tella, on a visit here this week to meet with Israeli leaders, was asked to clarify his country’s position in the wake of media reports that Syria had sought to purchase a reactor from Argentina.
Although the reactor would reportedly be used for medical research, di Tella told Israel Radio, “We will not do anything that will compromise in the eyes of the main actors, the peace process and the peace in this part of the world.”
“We haven’t signed anything, we haven’t committed ourselves to anything, so I am a bit surprised the Israeli press speaks about negotiations that are going on,” he added.
Di Tella, speaking about his country’s ongoing investigation of the bombing of the Jewish community headquarters in Buenos Aires on July 18, 1994, said the hunt for suspects would continue.
“There is no intention whatsoever of interrupting” the investigation, he said.
But he cautioned against building too much hope on every new development.
On Sunday, Paraguay extradited to Argentina five Lebanese men and a Brazilian man and woman in connection with the bombing.
The seven were wanted in connection with a separate investigation into illegal stocks of weapons found near Buenos Aires in April 1994.
They were also suspected of links to the March 1992 bombing of the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires. That attack claimed the lives of 29 people and wounded more than 100.
Argentine officials hope that the seven will shed new light on the ongoing investigation into the bomb attack on the Jewish headquarters last year.
The Argentine government has come under sharp criticism for its handling o the investigation into the bombing, which killed 86 people and left at least 300 wounded.
One year after the bomb was detonated, the Argentine government’s investigation has yielded only four arrests and no conclusive explanation of the bombing.