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Prosecutor Appeals Dismissal of Complaint Against Argentine Leader

Argentina's President Cristina Fernandez greets supporters as she arrives for the opening session of the 133rd legislative term of Congress in Buenos Aires, March 1, 2015.

The Argentine prosecutor investigating accusations that President Cristina Fernandez tried to whitewash Iran's alleged involvement in a deadly 1994 bombing on Wednesday appealed a judge's decision last week to dismiss the case.

The judge "discontinued" the case instigated by star investigator Alberto Nisman, who was found dead under mysterious circumstances in January. The complaint was resubmitted last month by prosecutor Gerardo Pollicita.

Nisman's death the day before he was to testify to Congress about his complaint against the president shocked Argentina and hurt the government's credibility ahead of October's election.

Many Argentines also expressed anger at Judge Daniel Rafecas' decision to dismiss Nisman's claims without a trial.

"A criminal hypothesis of exceptional severity and institutional importance, like that presented by Dr. Nisman, requires all efforts possible to attempt to reach the real truth of what happened," Pollicita said in a statement announcing his appeal.

Nisman accused the president in January of seeking to take the focus off the Iranians suspected of carrying out the 1994 bombing of a Buenos Aires Jewish community center that killed 85 in order to get access to Tehran's oil.

Four days after he made that complaint, he was found shot dead in his apartment, sparking a blizzard of conspiracy theories.

Rafecas last Thursday dismissed Nisman's allegations for lack of evidence. On the contrary, he said, the government had done all it could to aid the investigation into the 1994 bombing.

Fernandez's leftist administration has said Nisman's charges were part of a plan to smear the president's name and carry out a coup d'etat in country that experienced six coups in the last century.

The government took out full-page advertisements in local newspapers Wednesday, raising questions about Nisman's motivation to press cover-up charges against the president.

"Could there be any hypothesis other than that he was trying to destabilize politics?" it asked.

In the same ad, the government stressed that its stalled agreement with Iran that would have allowed the interrogation of the Iranian suspects remained the best way to get to the bottom of the 1994 bombing.

Nisman last year got a federal court to strike down that deal as unconstitutional. Tehran denies any responsibility for the attack and refuses to extradite its citizens.