Two Argentinean Judges Decline to Handle Nisman’s Allegations

February 3, 2015  

Two judges in Argentina on Monday declined to handle the allegations brought by late prosecutor Alberto Nisman against President Cristina Fernandez, charging her with seeking to derail his investigation of the deadly 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center, Reuters reported.

Nisman’s death came hours before he had been due to testify against senior government officials on the subject of the bombing of the Jewish center in Buenos Aires in 1994, which left 85 people dead.

He had accused several senior government figures – including Kirchner and Foreign Minister Hector Timerman – of involvement in a plot to cover up Iran’s alleged role in the bombing.

His death has set off a huge scandal, with Kirchner suggesting Nisman was manipulated by former intelligence agents who then killed him to smear her.

Nisman had brought his case before Judge Ariel Lijo as he was already investigating charges of attempts to derail the prosecutor’s investigation of the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center that killed 85.

The other cover-up charges involve ex-President Carlos Menem, who ruled the South American country from 1989 to 1999, noted Reuters.

But Lijo said in a statement on Monday that there were insufficient grounds to link the two charges given the alleged crimes took place during different time periods and by different people.

“There mere fact it has some kind of link indirect or direct with the attack on the AMIA, as in the present case,” is not sufficient to tack Nisman’s charges onto the others, Lijo said, according to Reuters.

The second judge called upon to take up Nisman’s charges, Daniel Rafecas, also declined to do so, according to private and state-run Argentine media. His office did not return calls seeking comment.

Public anger over the official reaction to Nisman’s death – which officials initially attempted to dismiss as suicide – prompted the Argentine government to back a probe into his death.

In 2013, Kirchner signed a memorandum of understanding with Tehran agreeing to set up a “truth commission” to investigate the bombing and allowing Argentine prosecutors to question the suspects in Iran.

The rapprochement was vehemently opposed at the time by Jewish community leaders, who charged it was “unconstitutional.”

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