Israel killed majority of those behind Buenos Aires blasts: ex-envoy
BUENOS AIRES - Agence France-Presse
Firemen and policemen search for wounded people after a bomb exploded at the Argentinian Israeli Mutual Association (AMIA in Spanish) in Buenos Aires, July 18, 1994. AFP PhotoIsrael has killed most of those behind the deadly attacks on its embassy and a Jewish charities building in Argentina in the 1990s, a former Israeli envoy said Thursday. The July 1994 bombing of the Argentine Jewish Charities Federation (AMIA) building in Buenos Aires killed 85 people. Hundreds were hurt in a bombing Argentina says was masterminded by Iran.
Two years earlier, in March 1992, a car bombing in front of the Israeli embassy in the capital killed 29 and wounded 200 others.
"The large majority of those responsible are no longer of this world, and we did it ourselves," Itzhak Aviran, who was Israel's ambassador to Argentina from 1993 to 2000, told the Buenos Aires-based AJN Jewish news agency.
Two decades after the blasts, those who instigated them have not been brought to justice.
Neither Carlos Menem, who was Argentina's president from 1989 to 1999, nor his successor Fernando de la Rua and those who followed "did anything to get to the bottom of this tragedy," Aviran said.
"We still need an answer (from the Argentine government) on what happened," he added. "We know who the perpetrators of the embassy bombing were and they did it a second time." Argentine courts have charged eight Iranians over the AMIA bombing and authorities are demanding their extradition. They include former defense minister Ahmad Vahidi and ex-president Akbar Hashemi Rafsanjani.
Argentine authorities also suspect Iran of being behind the 1992 bombing.
Iran has repeatedly denied any involvement in the attacks.
Argentina's 300,000-strong Jewish community is the largest in Latin America.