U.S. officials said that an international arrest warrant for Iran’s former defense minister, Ahmad Vahidi, in the 1994 AMIA Jewish center bombing will not be voided under the Iran nuclear deal.
According to the State Department, Vahidi is still wanted in connection with the deadly 1994 bombing of the Buenos Aires AMIA Jewish center and nothing will be altered under the agreement between Iran and the world powers that was reached in July.
“Nothing in the recently concluded Joint Comprehensive Plan Of Action, or JCPOA, on Iran’s nuclear program has an impact on or removes the Red Notice for General Vahidi issued by Interpol, in relation to the 1994 bombing in Argentina,” the State Department said in a statement on July 31, two days after Argentine Foreign Minister Hector Timerman, who is Jewish, asked Secretary of State John Kerry about Vahidi’s status in a letter. “And we continue to urge the international community and Argentine authorities to do whatever is necessary to hold the AMIA bombers accountable for that atrocity.
The statement also said that in addition to Vahidi, Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps and its officials are still sanctioned in the United States because they were listed for reasons outside the extent of the agreement.
Timerman’s letter was also sent to European Union foreign affairs chief Federica Mogherini.
On July 27, The Wall Street Journal reported that “the E.U.’s planned delisting of Tehran’s former minister of defense, retired Brig. Gen. Ahmad Vahidi, is among a group of Iranian military officers, nuclear scientists and defense institutions set to be rehabilitated internationally in the wake of the nuclear accord.”
The State Department also said in its response, “our secondary sanctions will also stay in force, which means that foreign banks and companies could be exposed to sanctions if they engage in transactions with these listed individuals.”
The State Department also added that because Vahidi is not listed under any nuclear-related activities, he will remain on the Interpol list for eight more years.
In February, Timerman asked John Kerry to include the AMIA attack in the negotiations with Iran, but the attack was not included in the talks.