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Argentina Placed on High Alert for Terrorist Attack - 2003-11-26


Security agencies in Argentina are on high alert for a possible terrorist attack. Officials who issued the warning say U.S. and European interests could be targeted.

Argentine Defense Minister Jose Pampuro confirms that Argentina has received intelligence from national and international agencies warning of a possible terrorist attack.

Mr. Pampuro told local radio that the attack could affect American, British or Spanish interests. All three countries have strong business, political, and cultural ties with Argentina.

Argentina did not send troops to join the U.S. and British-led invasion of Iraq this year, but Spanish soldiers are serving there.

Embassies throughout the capitol of Buenos Aires are taking precautions against possible attack and security has been stepped up at border crossings throughout South America's second-largest country. Argentina shares the lawless "tri-border" region with Paraguay and Brazil, an area that the United States has long suspected of harboring Islamic militants.

Argentina experienced two deadly terrorist attacks in the 1990s. A bomb exploded at the Israeli Embassy in Buenos Aires in 1992, killing 29 people. Two years later, a car bomb destroyed a Jewish Community Center leaving 85 dead.

Argentina suspects Iran was involved with the Jewish Center attack, an accusation that Iranian officials deny. Both terrorist attacks remain unsolved.

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