Saudi Arabia Dismissed
As 911 Defendant In 6 Lawsuits

By Dahr Jamail
NEW YORK (AP) - The kingdom of Saudi Arabia, three Saudi princes and several Saudi financial institutions were dismissed Tuesday as defendants in six civil lawsuits accusing them of providing support to al-Qaida before the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks.
Judge Richard Casey said the president, not the courts, has the authority to label a foreign nation a terrorist, though he said he understood the "desire to find a legal remedy for the horrible wrongs committed on Sept. 11, 2001."
The lawsuits alleged more than 200 defendants provided material support to Osama bin Laden and al-Qaida. Defendants included al-Qaida, its members and associates, charities, banks, front organizations, terrorist organizations and financiers who allegedly supported al-Qaida.
The judge said the plaintiffs failed to provide sufficient facts to overcome the kingdom of Saudi Arabia's immunity. He said Saudi Arabia maintains it has worked with the United States to share information in the fight against terrorism.
Among financial institutions dismissed as defendants were Al Rajhi Bank, which has nearly 400 branch offices throughout Saudi Arabia; Saudi American Bank, the second largest bank in Saudi Arabia; and Arab Bank, which has headquarters in Egypt with branch offices throughout the world.
Casey said he found no basis for a bank's liability for injuries resulting from attacks funded by money passing through it on routine banking business.
The judge's documents did not identify the plaintiffs' lawyers.



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