The Saudi Arabian government is furious over the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) bill that will allow family members of the victims of the September 11, 2001 terrorists attacks on the World Trade Center to sue the Saudi Arabian government for their financial support of the 9/11 hijackers. Saudi government officials are calling the bill a “stab in the back” and are threatening to reduce or completely cut valuable security and intelligence cooperation with the United States.
Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia issued an official statement criticizing the bill stating:
“The enactment of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) is of great concern to the community of nations that object to the erosion of the principle of sovereign immunity, which has governed international relations for hundreds of years. The erosion of sovereign immunity will have a negative impact on all nations, including the United States,”
The Saudi government continues to deny their participation in the attacks they have called the bill unrealistic and claim there is no basis for any potential law suits. Salman al-Ansari, the president of the Saudi American Public Relation Affairs Committee (SAPRAC) issued a statement saying:
“Saudi has been stabbed in the back by this unthoughtful and unrealistic bill, How can you sue a country that is collaborating against the very same terrorism that they are baselessly being accused of?”
Family members of the victims have been pushing congress to approve the bill for over a decade. It was vetoed by Obama but the veto was overridden in landslide victories by both the House and Senate.