[JURIST] Over two dozen US insurance companies associated with Travelers Companies [corporate website] initiated a lawsuit on Wednesday against ten defendants over the September 11 terrorist attacks, including companies affiliated with Osama bin Laden’s family, Saudi banks and several charities. The companies filed suit [Reuters report] in the US District Court for the Southern District of New York [official website] and alleges that the defendants aided and abetted the attacks through activities in support of al Qaeda. The defendants include National Commercial Bank, Al Rajhi Bank, the Mohamed Binladin Company and the Muslim World League [organization websites]. This is the latest in a series of lawsuits filed after Congress overrode former President Obama’s veto, in order to remove Saudi Arabia’s immunity from US citizens’ lawsuits.
Last month more than 850 family members of victims of the 9/11 attacks filed a lawsuit [JURIST report] against the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. This legal challenge only became available after congress passed the Justice Against State Sponsors of Terrorism Act [materials], which provided the legal recourse to sue foreign governments over the 9/11 attacks. After the bill passed in both chambers of congress it was vetoed [JURIST report] by President Barack Obama in September, who argued that the bill would open US diplomats and servicemen to suit abroad. Congress overrode the presidential veto [JURIST report] in a bipartisan effort. The law was quickly condemned by Saudi Arabia [JURIST report].