News Releases 2015
Wiesenthal Center Commends Argentine Steps to Transparency in re-examining the 1994 AMIA Jewish Center Bombing
“The Argentine-Iran Memorandum had planned a spurious 'Truth Commission', rather like having Saddam Hussein lead an investigation into 9/11” ...“Its cancellation and subsequent developments inspire renewed hope for the families of the 85 dead and over 300 wounded, to at last – after a 21 year wait – obtain justice.”
Buenos Aires, 30 December 2015
Upon accession, the new government immediately took measures to nullify the Argentine-Iranian Memorandum on the 1994 AMIA Jewish Centre bombing.
Today, the last day of the Court calendar before recess, a Federal Prosecutor called for former Foreign Minister Hector Timerman to be investigated following a leaked telephone conversation in which he acknowledged that the AMIA atrocity was committed by Iran and, yet while knowing that, he still negotiated the Memorandum with them.
The Prosecutor also urged a reopening of the file of AMIA investigating Prosecutor, Alberto Nisman, who was found dead in suspicious circumstances.
“The Wiesenthal Centre has been involved in the AMIA case since the atrocity and commends the new government for its steps towards transparency in reexamining Iranian complicity,” stated Dr. Ariel Gelblung, the Center's Latin American Representative.
“The Memorandum had planned a spurious ‘Truth Commission’ rather like having Saddam Hussein lead an investigation into 9/11”... “Its cancellation and subsequent developments inspire renewed hope for the families of the 85 dead and over 300 wounded, after a 21 year wait, to at last obtain justice,” argued Dr. Shimon Samuels, the Center’s Director for International Relations.
Wiesenthal Centre Applauds Rejection by Paris Appeals Court of Demands by 1980 Copernic Synagogue Bombing Suspect to Annul all Charges
“Paris – the city of Copernic and so many subsequent acts of terror – will see Diab take the stand in 2016... May this be the year to bring final closure to families of the victims and survivors. After a wait of 36 years, justice further delayed would be justice denied.”
Paris, 22 December 2015
On 3 October 1980, at 6:35 pm, a bomb exploded outside the Copernic Synagogue in Paris, killing four passers-by and injuring 40 worshippers inside the building.
Then French Prime Minister, Raymond Barre, declared that "a bomb set for Jews killed four innocent Frenchmen". One was Aliza - wife of Israeli film maker, Micha Shagrir - who had arrived to Paris as a weekend guest of journalist, Tamar Golan.
Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, accompanied Aliza the one hundred yards from her hostess's apartment to the corner of Copernic, where a few seconds later she met her death.
Blog by Dr. Shimon Samuels published in The Jerusalem Post
14 December 2015
“The anti-Israel offensive was launched not by BDS marchers, but by European and UN diplomats endorsing delegitimization of one of those 195 member-states hosted by France.”
Environmentalists demonstrate near the Arc de Triomphe in Paris, France, as the World Climate
Change Conference 2015 (COP21) meets, December 12, 2015 (photo Reuters).
The much-vaunted United Nations COP21 Climate Talks opened on November 30 in the suburban former Le Bourget airport under “red” security conditions in a traumatized Paris, a week after the terrorist massacre that took more than 130 lives.
More than 40,000 people convened with the extravagant aim to save the planet for future generations by containing global warming and curbing greenhouse gas emissions, even though resistance to the conditions of the 1997 Kyoto Protocol at subsequent gatherings wrapped the current Summit in skepticism.
Wiesenthal Centre to the Organisation to American States (OAS) Secretary General: “Middle East Terrorism is Awakening in the Americas.”
Paris, 10 December 2015
In a letter to OAS Secretary General, Luis Almagro, Simon Wiesenthal Centre Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels and Latin American Representative, Dr. Ariel Gelblung, noted a 1 December report of 5 Syrians holding stolen Greek passports, arrested and then released in Honduras, claiming the United States as their destination.
Apparently, these “asylum seekers” left Syria through Lebanon through Turkey via Brazil, Argentina and Costa Rica to Honduras where there is a large Middle East community.
Likewise, the 6 December arrest in Buenos Aires of 5 Syrians with Greek stolen passports. Sources point to their staying near a Jewish-owned hotel that hosts many community celebrations.
Another Syrian, wanted by INTERPOL for alleged links to ISIS, was arrested in Paraguay with another Greek stolen passport, asking for refuge in Argentina.
Two other Syrians were stopped on their way from Buenos Aires, Argentina to Colonia, Uruguay. On 7 December, these led to a Turkish citizen, who reportedly heads a trafficking network of Syrians given stolen Greek documents, on their way to the United States through Argentina and Brazil.
Gelblung emphasised that “these are not isolated incidents that reveal a well-planned modus operandi that must be taken very seriously by the governments of the Western hemisphere.”
Samuels added that “AMIA bombing investigation Prosecutor, Alberto Nisman, already pointed to mainly Hezbollah sleepers in 9 Latin American countries, including Honduras and the Triple Frontier between Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay…,” continuing, “Argentina has been the main victim in the past and now seems, once again, to be a focal point. We call on newly-elected President Macri to take urgent measures to contain this threat.”
The Wiesenthal Centre officials appealed to the OAS to convene a special meeting of its 35 member-states on awakening Middle East terrorism in the Americas.
Wiesenthal Centre to COP21 President: “Palestinians Pollute Climate Change in Environmental Attack on Israel”
“Following the Netanyahu-Abbas Paris handshake, the Palestinians have once again shown that they never miss an opportunity to miss an opportunity.”
“Decades of EU, US and UN billions of largesse have not prevented Palestinian continued self-inflicted ecological disaster.”
Paris, 6 December 2015
In a letter to COP21 Climate Change Conference President and French Foreign Minister, Laurent Fabius, the Simon Wiesenthal Centre’s Director for International Relations, Dr. Shimon Samuels, protested “European endorsement of Palestinian propaganda at this weekend’s session on Climate Change Planning in Conflict Settings: State of Palestine.”