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Last Updated: Thursday, 6 November, 2003, 00:22 GMT
Iran blamed for Argentina bomb
The aftermath of the 1994 bombing of a Jewish centre in Buenos Aires
The blast was Argentina's worst terror attack
A former Iranian secret service agent has accused Iran of planning a 1994 bomb attack on a Jewish cultural centre in the Argentine capital, Buenos Aires.

"Witness C" told a Buenos Aires court via video-link from Germany that Iran attacked the centre thinking it was a base for the Israeli secret service.

More than 80 people died and 200 people were injured in the attack.

Iran has denied any involvement in the blast and says the case against it is politically motivated.

Diplomatic row

The car-bomb blast at the seven-story AMIA Jewish community centre on 18 July 1994 was Argentina's worst ever terror attack.

The evidence being given by Witness C is part of the trial of 20 Argentineans accused of involvement in the bombing.

Earlier this year, Argentine Judge Juan Jose Galeano also issued warrants for the arrest of 12 Iranians in relation to the attack.

These included Iran's ambassador to Argentina at the time of the bombing, Hadi Soleimanpour, whose arrest in the UK sparked a major diplomatic row between Iran and Argentina and between Iran and the UK.

Mr Soleimanpour is currently on bail pending the outcome of the case.

Many in Argentina's 300,000-strong Jewish community believe the bombing was planned by some of Iran's most senior officials, aided by senior Argentines.

A 1992 bomb attack on the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires also left 29 people dead, but remains unsolved.




SEE ALSO:
Iran pulls envoy from Argentina
12 Mar 03  |  Americas
Iran diplomat called in bomb row
11 Mar 03  |  Americas
Iran denies Argentina blast role
09 Mar 03  |  Americas
Argentina Jewish bomb trial starts
24 Sep 01  |  Americas


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