Bill would allow victims of terrorism, including victims of the 9/11 attacks, and their families the right to sue foreign states and sponsors of terrorism
Washington, DC – U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar announced that bipartisan legislation she has backed to assist families of 9/11 victims passed the Senate this week. The bipartisan bill would allow victims of terrorism, including victims of the 9/11 attacks, and their families the right to sue foreign states and sponsors of terrorism.
“We will never forget the horror and heartbreak of that day nearly 15 years ago when terrorists committed an act of unspeakable evil against the American people—including Minnesota’s own Tom Burnett, Jr. and Max Beilke,” Klobuchar said. “While no amount of compensation can bring back the loved ones lost to acts of terror like we saw on September 11th, this bill will allow victims and their families to hold the people who helped fund these terrible acts accountable.”
Born and raised in Bloomington, Tom Burnett, Jr. was one of the passengers on United Airlines Flight 93 who courageously fought back against the Al Qaeda hijackers and prevented that plane from reaching its intended target.
Max Beilke, who graduated from Alexandria High School, was killed when hijackers attacked the Pentagon on September 11, 2001. Beilke served 22 years active duty in the U.S. Army. Klobuchar led the effort to name the Department of Veterans Affairs outpatient clinic in Alexandria in his honor.
Several court decisions since the 9/11 attacks have improperly blocked terrorism-related claims that Congress intended to permit. The Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act, which was introduced by Senators Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and John Cornyn (R-TX), allows terrorism victims, including victims of the 9/11 attacks, the right to pursue foreign states and sponsors of terrorism in federal court. The bill allows Americans to bring financial damage claims against those who funded the attacks. The legislation would also afford this right to families of other American victims of terrorism that have occurred since September 11, 2001.