Tuesday, January 18, 2022

ARGENTINA | 02-01-2020 20:40

Alberto Fernández: I doubt Nisman committed suicide, but there's no proof of murder

"I doubt that someone who was going through a euphoric moment could commit suicide," says president, as he comments on late prosecutor's death.

President Alberto Fernández said Thursday he doubts that Alberto Nisman – the late special prosecutor who died two days after accusing former president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner of helping cover up the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish community centre – committed suicide.

But he insisted "there isn't a shred of proof" that Alberto Nisman was murdered, as his family insists.

Nisman was appointed special prosecutor into the 1994 bombing of the Argentine Israelite Mutual Association (AMIA) headquarters, which left 85 dead and 300 wounded. But in 2015, his body was found in his Buenos Aires apartment with a gunshot wound to the head, delivered at close range from a handgun found at his side.

The timing and circumstances of his death were suspicious: it came just days after he directly accused then-president Fernández de Kirchner and some of her top aides of covering up Iran's alleged involvement in the bombing.

"I doubt that someone who was going through a euphoric moment could commit suicide, I don't know that. I'm allowing myself to doubt it," Fernández, whose vice-president is Fernández de Kirchner, told Radio 10.

Nisman had been due to outline his case against Fernández de Kirchner and her administration before Congress just two days after his death.

Fernández de Kirchner, who served president from 2007 to 2015, is accused of having attempted to cover up Iranian involvement in the bombing in return for trade deals with her government.

In July, Alberto Fernández testified in Fernández de Kirchner's trial over a newspaper interview he gave in 2015 criticising her for allowing Iranian suspects to be questioned back home, rather than in Argentina. Although he was Cabinet chief under his vice-president's husband and predecessor as president, Néstor Kirchner, and initially held onto the post under her, the two fell out and Fernández became a fierce critic of the then president.

The two have since made up and Fernández, a criminal law professor, told Radio 10 that the cover-up case against Fernández de Kirchner was "absurd."

In the Nisman case, he said "the only person harmed by the crime was Cristina."

Nisman's accusation was twice dismissed before Federak Judge Claudio Bonadio took up the case in 2016, after Fernández de Kirchner had been replaced by Mauricio Macri as president.

On January 1, Netflix began streaming a new six-part documentary looking into Nisman's work and the circumstances of his death.


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