Iran Lawmakers Back Minister Wanted in Bombing

One member of parliament, Hadi Qavami, interrupted a speech by Defence Minister-designate Ahmad Vahidi to say he had initially opposed Vahidi's nomination but he changed his mind after "the Zionists' allegations" and would now vote for him.

The comment drew praise from other deputies in the assembly, who chanted "Death to Israel", state broadcaster IRIB reported.

Argentina this month condemned the nomination of Vahidi, a senior Revolutionary Guards officer who was deputy defence minister in Ahmadinejad's outgoing government, as "an affront to the victims" of the attack 15 years ago.

Buenos Aires has formally accused Iran of masterminding the bombing and is seeking the arrest of high-ranking government officials. Iran has repeatedly denied involvement and last week said Argentina was interfering in its internal affairs.

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