Argentine Prosecutor Dies Suddenly Ahead of Hearing on Bombing

An Argentine prosecutor who accused President Cristina Kirchner of obstructing a probe into the 1994 bombing of the Argentine-Israeli Mutual Association (AMIA) reportedly died just hours before he was due at a Congressional hearing Monday.

According to several Argentine television stations citing judicial sources, Alberto Nisman was found dead overnight in his apartment in the trendy Puerto Madero neighborhood of the capital. The cause of death was not immediately known.

Chillingly, Nisman only a few days ago was interviewed and said the investigation against Kirchner was "likely to kill me." In the interview he added "from today my life has changed. I told my daughter she is likely to hear awful things about her father."

The 1994 van bombing of the building of the Jewish community center left 85 people dead and 300 others injured in the worst attack of its kind in the South American country.

Nisman had last week asked for an investigation into possible obstruction by Kirchner and was due to speak at a Congressional hearing Monday.

The prosecutor, who had led the bombing investigation since 2004, accused Iran of being behind the attack and said Kirchner hampered the inquiry to curry favor with the Islamic republic.

Nisman had also accused former president Carlos Menem (1989-99) of helping obstruct an investigation into the bombing. The bombing came two years after an attack against the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires.

Argentina and Iran reached an agreement in 2013 to investigate the bombing, with Iran denying any involvement in the attack.

Nisman accused Fernandez and other senior Argentine officials, including Foreign Minister Hector Timerman, of agreeing not to punish at least two former Iranian officials in the case.

"The president and her foreign minister took the criminal decision to fabricate Iran's innocence to sate Argentina's commercial, political and geopolitical interests," Nisman said.

He added that "the impunity of the Iranians was ordered by the president and instrumented by Timerman" with the goal of scoring closer geopolitical ties with Iran, trading oil and even selling weapons.

Mohsen Rabbani, Iran's former cultural attache in Buenos Aires, and the Islamic Republic's former intelligence minister, Ali Fallahian, are among the suspects in the July 18, 1994, attack.

Likewise, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani was found to have been on the special Iranian government committee that plotted the 1994 bombing, according to an indictment by the Argentine government prosecutor investigating the case.

AFP contributed to this report.

Source: http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/News.aspx/190146

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