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article imageNetanyahu in Argentina for first Israeli premier visit

By AFP     Sep 11, 2017 in World

Benjamin Netanyahu arrived in Buenos Aires on Monday for in the first visit by an Israeli premier to Latin America.

Surrounded by security, the Prime Minister held a closed-door meeting with members of Argentina's Jewish community, estimated to be Latin America's biggest with 300,000 members.

Netanyahu will also participate in a ceremony to remember victims of two bomb attacks at the Israeli embassy in 1992 and a Jewish community center in 1994. The event is closed to the press.

The embassy attack killed 29 and injured 220, while the community center blast left 85 dead and 300 injured.

Israel blamed the embassy attack on the Lebanese Shiite group Hezbollah.

Argentine investigators accused five former Iranian officials of sponsoring Hezbollah's attack on the community center. Iran denied any involvement.

Pro-Palestinian and left-wing demonstrators will protest Netanyahu's visit on Tuesday, when he will meet Argentine President Mauricio Macri.

Israel is looking to expand its commercial ties with new regions -- seeks allies likely to vote in its favor at UN bodies, where it is regularly condemned over the occupation of Palestinian territories.

"There is a good opportunity to increase investment and trade," a senior official in the Argentine foreign ministry said.

Argentina will also make a statement regarding the transfer of some 140,000 World War II documents and photos to allow for further research on the Holocaust.

Following the two-day trip, Netanyahu will visit Colombia and Mexico before heading to New York for the United Nations General Assembly.

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