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Israeli Hezbollah rocket victims sue Iran in US court

[JURIST] Eighty-five victims of rocket attacks in Israel have filed a lawsuit [complaint, PDF] in the US District Court for the District of Columbia [official website] seeking damages from Iran and Iran's central bank for for injuries suffered in the 2006 Second Lebanon War. The suit, filed Monday, claims that Iran, between 2001 and 2006, gave Hezbollah [JURIST news archive] more than $50 million "with the specific intent and purpose of facilitating, enabling and causing Hezbollah to carry out terrorist attacks against American and Israeli targets in order to advance Iran's Policy and Goals" of undermining the US and abolishing Israel. Specifically, the plaintiffs allege that Iran's funding allowed Hezbollah to carry out a rocket barrage [Ynet report] in July and August 2006 during a conflict with Israel. The plaintiffs are US, Canadian, and Israeli citizens who were injured or represent those killed in the attacks. The suit seeks $1 billion in compensatory damages and an unspecified amount in punitive damages.

In 2007, Human Rights Watch condemned Hezbollah for using rockets [JURIST report] against civilians during the conflict. Earlier that year, Amnesty International found that both Israel and Hezbollah failed to adequately investigate war crimes allegations [JURIST report] stemming from the conflict. In 2006, the UN Human Rights Council found that Israel had committed flagrant violations of human rights [JURIST report]. Human rights groups accused both Israel and Hezbollah of using weapons banned by international law for use against civilians [JURIST reports].

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