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US Congress mulls sanctions against Argentina

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The death of Argentina’s Federal Prosecutor Alberto Nisman who had accused the country’s President Cristina Kirchner of attempting to cover-up the bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center back in 1994, stirred up a new dispute with the United States after Buenos Aires decided to carry out an independent investigation into the death and rejected the US Republicans’ demands to sever diplomatic ties with Iran whom they hold accountable for the attack despite evidence proved otherwise. The prosecutor who had been investigating the bombing since a decade ago was found dead at his home on Sunday.

Senator Marco Rubio, who had a close relationship with Nisman, along with other republican congressmen, announced plans for pushing a bill to impose sanctions against Argentina ranging from diplomatic visa cancellation to federal assets freezing if the country decides to continue its cooperation with Iran.

Senator Marco Rubio had invited Nisman last year for a hearing at the US Congress, which was called off by the Argentine president. Last December, the AMIA case defense attorney Juan Gabriel Labaké accused Nisman of an act of treason against the country.

Some US media outlets such as “The Washington Times” joined the campaign launched by Senator Rubio and alleged that Argentina doesn’t have a moral stand to carry out an independent investigation and called for a joint international task force to do so.

The death of the Federal Prosecutor Nisman is another controversy in the turbulent and, at times, tense ties between the Washington and Buenos Aires. Argentinean lawmakers say any US congress sanction will erode the already ailing bilateral relationship.


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