Prosecutor files papers accusing Argentine president of AMIA cover-up


BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (JTA) — An Argentine prosecutor formally accused President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner and other government officials of covering up Iran’s involvement in the 1994 AMIA bombing.

On Friday, Gerardo Pollicita filed a document to a federal court charging that Kirchner ordered her Foreign Ministry to sign a pact with Iran to ignore Iran’s responsibility in the Buenos Aires Jewish center attack in exchange for commercial benefits.

Pollicita based the document on the 290-page complaint drafted by AMIA special prosecutor Alberto Nisman, who was found dead on Jan. 16, shortly before he was to present allegations to Congress about Kirchner, Foreign Minister Hector Timerman and others.

Pollicita wants to move forward with the probe. Judge Daniel Rafecas must decide how to proceed. Kirchner has denied the allegations.

Meanwhile, Nisman’s ex-wife on Thursday called for an international investigation of his still unexplained death.

Sandra Arroyo Salgado, herself a judge, made the plea at a meeting organized by opposition parties in Congress, where she said that she had asked the Public Defender’s Office to have Nisman’s Jan. 18 death investigated by the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights.

“The Argentine state acknowledged its responsibility before the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights for not investigating [its] worst-ever terrorist attack that killed 85 people and now also the prosecutor investigating the case,” she said in a statement that was widely interpreted as implying that Argentine justice authorities have not demonstrated the competence necessary to investigate the death of Nisman.

Nisman, who was Jewish, in 2004 was appointed chief prosecutor of the bombing at the Jewish center. He accused Kirchner of brokering a secret deal with Iran to help shield Iranian officials charged in the attack.

Nisman’s ex-wife also complained of leaks in the probe into his death, which is headed by investigator Viviana Fein.

“One does not need to be a lawyer to understand that leaking information of an ongoing criminal investigation can make it collapse,” Arroyo Salgado said.

Fein initially said that Nisman’s death was a suicide but later changed that hypothesis, suggesting he was murdered.

Nisman’s death will be commemorated in rallies around the world on Wednesday, exactly one month after he died. In the United States, the demonstrations are scheduled in Miami, New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington, Minneapolis, Las Vegas, Houston and San Francisco. In Europe, rallies are planned in Berlin, Athens and Paris.

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