Two committee chairmen in the US House of Representatives have sent Argentine President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner a letter expressing their “disappointment and deep concern” over her government’s decision to deny prosecutor Alberto Nisman permission to testify before the House Committee on Homeland Security over Iran’s involvement in the AMIA bombings.
Days before the 19th anniversary of the terrorist attack, the representatives called into question the authenticity of the government’s intentions and said they were “deeply disturbed” that Nisman was not allowed “to share the results of his work publicly with members of Congress currently investigating the threat from Iran” to North America’s homeland security.
Nisman, who is in charge of investigating the 18 July 1994 terrorist attack against the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, in which 85 people were killed and hundreds wounded, was invited to a subcommittee hearing entitled ‘Threat to the Homeland: Iran’s Extending Influence in the Western Hemisphere’ earlier this week.
The prosecutor had been invited to share the findings of his 2006 and 2013 investigations into the AMIA bombing and Iranian terrorist activities in South America. Nisman’s investigation “underscored a critical issue to US homeland security”, the committee and subcommittee chairmen write in a letter to Kirchner, because the prosecutor’s report had made it clear that Iran had been the main sponsor of a thwarted attack to blow up JFK airport in New York in June 2007. “Had the plot not been uncovered, an untold number of Americans could have been killed by this terrorist act,” the letter said.
Some weeks ago, Nisman published a 500-page indictment in which he says that Tehran had infiltrated South American countries during the 1980s to spread terrorism in the region and warned that an Iranian terrorist cell could perpetrate a similar attack in Uruguay.
“We believe that Argentina and the United States possess a shared interest in preventing hostile Iranian activity within the region,” the two Congressmen wrote, adding: “Considering both our countries have suffered terrorist attacks from agents affiliated with the government of Iran, we have a unique motivation for being vigilant to ensure that another Iranian-supported terrorist attack does not occur again within the Western Hemisphere.”