Hezbollah Acted Alone in 90s Attacks on Jews in Argentina, Mossad Report Finds

The report by Israel's intelligence agency, seen by the New York Times, contradicts the long-standing belief that Iran had played an operational role and that Argentinians were complicit

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People holding up pictures of the victims of the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, Argentina, July 17, 2015.
People holding up pictures of the victims of the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, Argentina, July 17, 2015.Credit: Victor R. Caivano / AP

An investigation by the Mossad reveals that two attacks against Israeli and Jewish targets in Buenos Aires in the 1990s, which killed dozens of people, were carried out by a secret Hezbollah unit without the assistance of Iran on the ground or complicity by Argentinian citizens.

The findings of the Mossad's internal investigation, published by the New York Times, contradict the long-standing intelligence assumptions of Israel, Argentina, and the United States that Iran had an operational role in the field. The Mossad, however, maintains Iran approved and funded the attacks.

The investigation also goes against suspicions that clerks, officials, and Argentinian citizens were complicit in the attacks.

The investigation also found that the attackers are currently living in Lebanon, where they have managed to evade justice and multiple assaults by Israel on Hezbollah.

In 1992, Hezbollah set off a bomb in the Israeli embassy in Argentina, killing 29. Two years later, Hezbollah operatives drove a bomb-laden truck into AMIA, a Jewish cultural center in Buenos Aires, killing 85 and injuring over 300 in the deadliest terror attack in Argentina's history.

As recently as this week, the U.S. State Department accused Hezbollah of carrying out the attack "with Iranian support" in a statement marking the anniversary of both1994 AMIA and the 2012 attack on a tour bus carrying Israelis in Burgas, Bulgaria.

Describing the attacks as a "clear example of Iran’s support of international terrorism," the State Department noted that "high-level Iranian government officials were directly implicated in the attack, and [Hezbollah] carried it out at the direction of the Iranian regime."

"The funding, training, weapons, and other support Iran provides Hezbollah support complex and heinous terrorist attacks like these," it continued, adding that it urges more countries to take action against Hezbollah "which make it harder for the group and its backers in Tehran to threaten peace and security around the globe."

Ben Samuels contributed to this report.

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