UAE Concerned About US House Passing 9/11 Bill
The House bill will allow the families of 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia in US courts
The UAE has expressed concern about the US Congress passing the ‘Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act’ last week.
The House bill, passed last Friday, will allow the families of 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia in US courts.
The UAE’s minister of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation Sheikh Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan said that the bill is “contrary to general liability rules and the principle of sovereignty enjoyed by states.”
“This law is not equal with the foundations and principles of relations among states, and represents a clear violation given its negative repercussions and dangerous precedents,” official news agency WAM quoted him as saying.
Sheikh Abdullah warned of the negative effects of the law on all countries, including the US, and the possible impact of chaos in the context of international relations, emphasising that “such laws will negatively affect international efforts and cooperation to combat terrorism,” the report said.
He stressed that the UAE is looking forward to the US legislative authorities reviewing the bill and not ratifying it in light of the serious consequences associated with implementing it.
The bill, which was passed unanimously by the US Senate in May, now heads to US President Hussein Obama’s office for ratification.
If it becomes law, it will remove the sovereign immunity for countries found to be involved in terrorist attacks on US soil.
It would allow survivors of the attacks and relatives of those killed to seek damages from other countries. If passed, several lawsuits are expected to be filed against Saudi Arabia, which has denied any role in the 9/11 attacks.
Earlier in the year, the Kingdom’s foreign minister Adel bin Ahmed al-Jubeir said his country’s objection to the bill is based on principles of international relations.
“What the US Congress is doing is stripping the principle of sovereign immunity which would turn the world for international law into the law of the jungle.”
US President Barack Hussein Obama would veto a bill passed by both Houses of Congress that would allow survivors and families of victims of the 9/11 attacks to sue the government of Saudi Arabia for damages, White House spokesman Josh Earnest said Monday.
“It’s not hard to imagine other countries using this law as an excuse to haul US diplomats or US service members or even US companies into courts all around the world,” Mr. Earnest told reporters in a daily briefing.
I anticipate the Mr. Obama will veto this legislation when it is put on his desk.
By Aarti Nagraj
Paul Ebeling, Editor