House passes bill allowing 9/11 lawsuits against Saudi Arabia

The House cleared legislation by voice vote Friday that would allow lawsuits against foreign governments suspected of supporting terrorist attacks on the United States. The bill is strongly opposed by Saudi Arabia. The White House has warned of but not explicitly threatened a veto.

The bill, which the Senate passed in mid-May, narrows the scope of foreign sovereign immunity by authorizing federal courts to hear criminal and civil cases against a foreign state or official suspected to have been involved in an act of international terrorism and to impose liability when applicable, according to a Congressional Research Service summary. 

Some have called the bill an attempt to allow the families of 9/11 victims to sue Saudi Arabia for alleged ties to the Sept. 11 attacks. 

John T. Bennett contributed to this report.


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