.contact us |.about us
News > International News ... ...
UK holds Iran ex-envoy over Argentina blast
( 2003-08-22 09:23) (Agencies)

Iran's former ambassador to Argentina was arrested by British police on Thursday in connection with the 1994 bombing of a Buenos Aires Jewish center which killed 85 people, Scotland Yard said.

File photo shows Argentine rescue workers searching the remains of the AMIA headquarters in Buenos Aires after a deadly bombing in 1994.  [AP]
Hadi Soleimanpour, ambassador at the time of the attack on the AMIA Jewish Community Center, was arrested on an extradition warrant and would appear before London magistrates on Friday, the British police said in a statement.

Last week, a judge in Argentina issued an arrest warrant through Interpol for Soleimanpour, 47, and seven other Iranian officials in connection with the car bomb attack in which about 200 people were also injured.

Israel and Washington -- which has branded Iran part of an "axis of evil" states that sponsor terrorism -- have long said they suspected Iranian-backed Middle Eastern guerrillas were behind the attack. Iran has fiercely denied any involvement.

Police said Soleimanpour was arrested on a warrant alleging that "on or before July 7, 1994, (he) did conspire with other persons to murder persons at the (AMIA Center)."

He is believed to have been living in the northern English city of Durham since February last year, when he entered the country on a student visa to study at Durham University.

Iran withdrew its ambassador to Argentina after being implicated by the Argentine government shortly after the bombing, but Tehran still retains a mission in Buenos Aires.

There was no immediate reaction from Tehran to the arrest, but last week it condemned the Argentinian orders to arrest the eight Iranian officials as part of "international Zionism's plan to manipulate Argentina."

Argentina's 300,000-strong Jewish community is the biggest in Latin America and the seventh largest in the world. Two years before the AMIA attack, the Israeli embassy in Buenos Aires was bombed, killing 29 people.

Marta Nercellas, the lawyer representing the AMIA center in Buenos Aires, said she was confident Britain would extradite Soleimanpour, who she believed did not have diplomatic immunity.

"He participated in a very concrete way in organizing the attack. The (Iranian) embassy in Argentina was used as the base from which they gathered intelligence information that had to do with the massacre," Nercellas told Argentine television.

"This is going to allow us to make progress in finding the international connection."

  Today's Top News   Top International News
+Commentary: Don't meddle with yuan
( 2003-09-02)
+200,000 troops to be cut by 2005
( 2003-09-02)
+Beijing Games marketing plan launched
( 2003-09-02)
+Flood forces 10,0000 to evacuate
( 2003-09-02)
+Beijing courts announce 50 major changes
( 2003-09-02)
+Medical Marijuana sold in the Netherlands
( 2003-09-02)
+Hamas militant killed in Israeli attack
( 2003-09-02)
+'Saddam' tape urges attacks on Iraq's occupiers
( 2003-09-02)
+Police charge 3 in two India bombings
( 2003-09-01)
+Myanmar denies opposition leader staging hunger strike

( 2003-09-01)
  Go to Another Section  
  Article Tools  
  Related Articles  

+Iran warns Israel on nuclear reactors

+Iran won't let US interrogate al-Qaeda

+Iran says will remove concerns on nuclear ambitions

+Iran says it won't give up nuke program

+Nine Iran students released after Khamenei's order

+Iran won't hand over Al Qaeda suspects to US

+Bush warns Syria, Iran on terrorism

+Editorial: Is war on Iran imminent?

        .contact us |.about us
  Copyright By chinadaily.com.cn. All rights reserved