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Police Arrest Four People on Charges of Desecrating Cemetery

October 24, 1996

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) _ Police arrested four people Thursday and charged them with desecrating 60 tombs at a Jewish cemetery outside Buenos Aires.

Investigating Judge Vitor Termite told reporters the arrests were made after a series of overnight raids on the suspects’ homes in Buenos Aires. He gave no further details.

On Wednesday, a previously unknown group calling itself the National Dignity Command claimed responsibility for spray painting swastikas on some tombs and smashing others last weekend.

A Command member, identifying himself as Luis Florio, called the director of the Jewish Hospital in Buenos Aires to claim responsibility and warned that the Command would be ``at the center of certain events in the next few days.″

Jewish cemeteries in Cordoba and Salta provinces also have been desecrated in recent months. No arrests have been made.

President Carlos Menem’s government has been criticized for failing to track down those responsible for bomb attacks on the Israeli Embassy in 1992 and a Jewish cultural center two years later. More than 100 people died in the attacks.

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