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Argentina Judge Hears Arguments on Which Bonds Ruling Covers

U.S. District Judge Thomas Griesa declined to rule immediately on calls by holders of defaulted Argentina bonds to bar payment on some dollar- and yen-denominated debt in a hearing in Manhattan federal court.

Argentina had asked the judge to delay rulings that bar the country from making payments on its restructured debt before paying holders of defaulted bonds as it faces a possible second default this month.

The South American nation renewed its request for a delay so it can negotiate without risking liability for what it argues could be billions of dollars in new claims by holders of defaulted and restructured bonds. That request has yet to be addressed.

Today, Griesa began the proceedings by hearing arguments about whether his orders bar payments to holders of U.S. dollar-denominated exchange bonds issued under Argentine law and payable in that country, without a corresponding payment to holders of the defaulted bonds.

Edward Friedman, a lawyer representing the defaulted bondholders, argued Griesa’s earlier rulings include all the exchange bonds issued in the nation’s 2005 and 2010 restructuring.

The case is NML Capital Ltd. v. Republic of Argentina, No. 08-cv-06978, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York (Manhattan).

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