Iran financed the 2007 campaign of Argentinian President Cristina Kirchner, in exchange for impunity for Iranians in the AMIA bombing, a magazine reports.
The Brazilian magazine Veja on Saturday reports that the deal, brokered by Venezuela’s Hugo Chavez, also provided the Iranians with nuclear know-how.
“I need you to broker with Argentina for aid to my country’s nuclear program. We need Argentinians to share their knowledge on nuclear technology; without this collaboration it is impossible to advance our program,’ Ahmadinejad told Chavez on January 13, 2007, according to the testimony of three former Chavez Cabinet members who now live in the United States and are collaborating in crime investigation.
“Don’t worry about the expenses required for this operation. Iran will support everything necessary to persuade the Argentines. I have another issue. I need you to discourage the Argentinians from insisting that Interpol capture the authorities of my country,” added the Iranian president, according to the report. Chavez agreed.
The Treasury Venezuela bought $6 billion in Argentina’s bonds to cover its debt in 2007 and 2008.
The Argentine government also received cash for the agreement. One of three former Venezuelan officials said that the famous suitcase of Guido Antonioni Wilson, containing $800,000 which he brought into the country without claiming, came from the Iranian regime and was bound for the presidential campaign of Cristina Kirchner and that Chavez was just the middlemen.
According to Veja, the exchange of nuclear secrets was managed in Argentina by Minister of Defense Nilda Garre, now ambassador to the Organization of American States, or OAS, in Washington. Iran was interested in the Argentinean experience with its heavy-water nuclear reactor “Atucha,” because they wanted to produce plutonium for use in nuclear weapons using only natural uranium.
“I can’t say that the government of Argentina gave nuclear secrets, but I know it took a lot by legal means and illegal means in exchange for something valuable to the Iranians,” the former officials reveal to Veja in its story titled “Chavistas confirm the conspiracy denounced by Nisman.”