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Argentine politicians mourn lawmaker killed by gunmen

By PAUL BYRNEMay 13, 2019
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People attend the wake of lawmaker Hector Olivares who was shot near the Congressional building last week, inside Congress in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Monday, May 13, 2019. Olivares died three days after being seriously wounded in a May 9 gun attack that killed a provincial official. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)
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People attend the wake of lawmaker Hector Olivares who was shot near the Congressional building last week, inside Congress in Buenos Aires, Argentina, Monday, May 13, 2019. Olivares died three days after being seriously wounded in a May 9 gun attack that killed a provincial official. (AP Photo/Natacha Pisarenko)

BUENOS AIRES, Argentina (AP) — Argentina’s president and politicians across the political spectrum gathered on Monday at a wake for a lawmaker who was killed in what has been described as a “mafia-style” attack that has shocked Argentines.

President Mauricio Macri and politicians from rival parties put their differences behind to attend wake at the lower house of Congress in Buenos Aires.

Legislator Héctor Olivares of La Rioja province died Sunday, three days after being seriously wounded in the gun attack that also killed a provincial official. Macri decreed a 48-hour period of national mourning.

Olivares belonged to the Radical Civic Union party of the ruling government coalition and was part of the transportation committee in the lower house. His remains will now be sent to his home province, where he will be buried.

“There’s profound sadness,” said lawmaker Eduardo Amadeo. “We’ve lost a colleague, a hard worker and a great defender of his province. ... He was a good friend who will be missed.”

Officials say two gunmen in a parked car shot Olivares and Miguel Marcelo Yadón near the congress building in the Argentine capital on Thursday. Yadón died shortly after being shot.

At least six people have been detained in the attack that the security minister has attributed to a mafia clan. Some legislators who were close to the victims at first believed that it was politically motivated, but authorities later said it was likely personal. The motive is still being probed.

“We have to wait for the investigation to end and for those responsible who have been detained to go to trial,” said lawmaker Daniel Lipovetzky.

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Associated Press writer Almudena Calatrava contributed to this report.

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