Report: Argentina to halt trade with Iran over Jewish center bombings

Argentina has decided to suspend trade with Iran over the Islamic Republic’s links to a a string of deadly terror attacks targeting Jews in Buenos Aires in the 1990s, the Argentine Jewish News reported this week.

Argentina’s Justice Minister Anibal Fernandez announced the suspension of ties during talks with leaders of the American Jewish Committee (AJC), the AJN reported Tuesday.

According to the BBC, howvever, Buenos Aires has denied calling for a suspension in trade and said it has made no such statement.

Argentina and Iran now trade more than $1 billion annually. AJC officials praised the alleged suspension, telling the Argentinian paper that such a move was crucial to aiding ongoing investigation of the terror attacks.

Argentina has charged six former Iranian officials with involvement in the bombings, which left over a hundred people dead, but no convictions have been issued so far. Iran and Hezbollah both deny any connection to the attack.

The investigations have been wracked by controversy and allegations of cover-ups, and former president Nestor Kirchner called them a “national disgrace” in 2005.

A briefing on the matter was given before Julio Schlosser, Secretary General of the AMIA Jewish Community Center in Buenos Aires – the site of 1994 bombing which killed people 85 dead – the AJC and AMIA authorities, the AJN reported.

Schlosser praises the Argentine government and its “firm commitment to carry on with the investigation” of the terror attacks following the announcement, according to the AJN