Saudi government condemns passage of US terrorism lawsuit bill

Following the override of President Obama’s veto of the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act by both houses of Congress on Wednesday, the Saudi government has resoundingly denounced the new law and hinted at consequences should it remain intact.

JASTA allows the survivors and victims’ families of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks to sue Saudis who have connections to terrorists involved in the attacks.

Remaining silent for one full day after Mr. Obama’s veto was rejected by Congress, the Saudi Foreign Ministry released a terse statement on Friday.

“The erosion of sovereign immunity will have a negative impact on all nations, including the United States,” it read.

In the run up to the law’s passage, veto and override, the Saudi government dedicated much energy to block JASTA from becoming law, hiring numerous public relations firms and lobbyists to intensively campaign against the bill’s passage.

Although the Saudi government offered no further comment, earlier statements on the matter revealed anger at the prospect of the bill’s passage would result in the withdrawal of investment from the U.S. in the amount of up to or surpassing $1 billion.

After the bill became law, House Speaker Paul Ryan expressed an interest in revising JASTA over fear it could expose U.S. troops abroad to reprisals.

“I would like to think there’s a way we can fix so that our service members do not have legal problems overseas while still protecting the rights of the 9/11 victims,” Ryan told reporters on Thursday.

 

[Zero Hedge] [Reuters] [Bloomberg] [The Intercept]