Itongadol.- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Sunday hailed the decision of the President of Argentina to cancel its agreement with Iran to run a joint investigation of the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center.
"That\’s a welcome change of direction and I hope we will see a significant improvement in Argentine-Israeli relations as well as a change for the better in relations with other countries in South America in the coming years," said Netanyahu.
The bombing at the Argentine Jewish Mutual Association (AMIA) in Buenos Aires killed 85 people and wounded 300, in the deadliest terror strike to hit the South American country.
Argentina\’s Justice Minister Germán Garavano told The New York Times on Friday that the new government will not attempt to renew its agreement with Iran to run a joint investigation of the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center.
Garavano said the Justice Ministry would not continue to appeal a court’s decision in 2014 that the commission signed into being in 2013 by the previous government, was unconstitutional.
In 2013, then-President Cristina Kirchner tried to form a "truth commission" with Iran to jointly investigate the bombing. She said at the time that the pact would reactivate the probe, but Israel and Jewish groups said it threatened to derail criminal prosecution of the case and absolved Iran of any wrongdoing or culpability in the attack.
Julio Schlosser, President of Argentina\’s leading Jewish association, the DAIS said in a statement that "this news is excellent, not only for the DAIA but also for Argentine society."
However, there seems to be no clear path on which to move forward as there is no visible legal way to interview Iranian suspects.
Argentinian prosecutors Alberto Nisman and Marcelo Martínez Burgos in October of 2006 formally accused the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah of carrying out the bombing under the direction of Iran. Nisman also accused Kirchner of covering up Iranian involvement in the bombing in order curry favor with the Islamic republic and gain access to its oil. He said he had phone recordings to back up his accusations.
Nisman in January 2015 was found dead in his apartment of a gunshot wound to the temple, just hours before he was scheduled to give damning testimony at a congressional hearing. Authorities said it was likely that his death was a suicide but the opposition and public cried murder as no note was found and no gunshot residue was discovered on Nisman\’s hands.
Nisman\’s death prompted public outrage. Several thousand protesters mobilized downtown in front of the presidential palace and Buenos Aires Cathedral, demanding an explanation for Nisman\’s death, which has yet to be concluded.