Prosecutor Forwards Case Against Kirchner in Probe of Bombing Cover-Up

The decision sets the stage for a showdown between the president and the judiciary.

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An Argentine prosecutor charged his country’s president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, with covering up Iran’s role in a 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center. A judge will now decide whether the case will go to trial.

The accusation comes nearly a month after the prosecutor who initially investigated the case, Alberto Nisman, was found dead in his apartment with a single gunshot wound to his head the day before he was scheduled to present his findings to Argentina’s legislator. His death was initially described as a suicide, but serious questions have been raised about the veracity of that claim.

After the death, the investigation was tasked to prosecutor Gerardo Pollicita, who on Friday accused Kirchner, Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman, and lawmaker Andrés Larroque of trying to clear Iranian officials of blame in the 1994 bombing in exchange for trade preferences. Pollicita’s allegations are based on Nisman’s findings.

An Argentine prosecutor charged his country’s president, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, with covering up Iran’s role in a 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center. A judge will now decide whether the case will go to trial.

The accusation comes nearly a month after the prosecutor who initially investigated the case, Alberto Nisman, was found dead in his apartment with a single gunshot wound to his head the day before he was scheduled to present his findings to Argentina’s legislator. His death was initially described as a suicide, but serious questions have been raised about the veracity of that claim.

After the death, the investigation was tasked to prosecutor Gerardo Pollicita, who on Friday accused Kirchner, Foreign Minister Héctor Timerman, and lawmaker Andrés Larroque of trying to clear Iranian officials of blame in the 1994 bombing in exchange for trade preferences. Pollicita’s allegations are based on Nisman’s findings.

The Argentine government reacted angrily to the development Friday. It denied that leaders colluded with Iran to sabotage an investigation into who carried out an attack that left 85 people dead, and ranks as the worst act of terrorism in Argentina’s history.

“This is an active judicial coup,” said cabinet chief Jorge Capitanich, according to the Guardian. “There is no proof at all. The people have to know that this is a vulgar lie, an enormous press operation.”

Presidential spokesman Anibal Fernández called Friday’s developments a “clear maneuver to destabilize democracy.”

Alexei Danichev/Host Photo Agency via Getty Images

Twitter: @EliasGroll

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