Interpol to issue arrest warrants over AMIA bombing

16 March 2007

The international police agency Interpol is to issue warrants for the arrest of five former Iranian officials and a Lebanese member of Hezbollah for the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aires. According to a statement on the Interpol website, so-called 'Red Notices' will be issued for the Hezbollah member Imad Fayez Mughniyah and the former Iranian intelligence minister Ali Fallahian, as well as for Mohsen Rabbani, Ahmad Reza Asghari, Ahmad Vahidi and Mohsen Rezai on March 31. Red Notices mean that the persons are placed on an international watch list for extradition to Argentina, which in November 2006 requested the notices for their alleged role in the worst terrorist attack in the country's history, leaving 85 people dead. The statement adds that Interpol has rejected requests for Red Notices for former Iranian president Ali Rafsanjani, foreign affairs minister Ali Akbar Velayati and former Iranian ambassador to Argentina, Hadi Soleimanpour,

Rabbani was cultural adviser at the Iranian embassy in Buenos Aires, while Rezai is a former commander of the Revolutionary Guard and Vahidi was previously commander of Iran's al-Quds special operations unit, according to Argentinean court documents. Asghari was a diplomat at the Iranian embassy in Buenos Aires. Mughniyah appears on the FBI's list of most wanted terrorists, where he is described as "the alleged head of the security apparatus'' of Hezbollah, a Lebanese group classified by the US as a terrorist organization. Iran protested at Argentina's request for extradition, forcing Interpol's Executive Committee to rule on the issue.

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