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Former Argentine President Cristina Fernández accused of treason

The former president of Argentina, Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, arrives for an audience in Buenos Aires, Argentina, on Thursday. (Victor R. Caivano / AP)

BUENOS AIRES – A federal On Thursday, the judge formally accused former president Cristina Fernández de Kirchner of treason charges and requested her arrest for hiding Iran's possible participation in the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center in Buenos Aires. Aires

In court documents, Judge Claudio Bonadio accused Fernández of obfuscating the Iranian role in the attack, which killed 85 people, in exchange for a potentially lucrative trade agreement. The court requested the lifting of her immunity from prosecution, a protection she likes as a sitting senator.

Underlining the seriousness of the charges, authorities carried out raids related to the case on Thursday, arresting three of their former assistants and associates. Hector Timerman, his former foreign minister, was placed under house arrest.

The charges stem from an investigation initially conducted by Alberto Nisman, a prosecutor who accused Fernandez of cover-up in 2015 and was later found dead in his apartment's bathroom. If his death was a suicide or a homicide still in dispute.

Although rare, the lifting of parliamentary protection is unprecedented. In October, Congress voted to lift the protection of its former planning minister, Julio De Vido, who faces charges of fraud and corruption.

Faiola reported from Miami.

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