September 10, 2020
On the eve of the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, September 10, 2020, a federal Judge directed the Saudi Arabian government to make as many as 24 current and former officials available for depositions about their possible knowledge of events leading up to the airplane attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, which killed almost 3,000 Americans. Click to Expand.
After months spent fighting for access to FBI investigative files and other documents that were thought to offer insight into the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia’s alleged role in the 9/11 attacks, plaintiffs in the case successfully petitioned the Southern District of New York to compel the agency to search for and produce the records. In April of 2020 the FBI was ordered to produce the records requested by the families and was given 45 days to comply with the order, which was issued by Magistrate Judge Sarah Netburn.
In May 2020 the FBI accidentally disclosed the name of the Saudi diplomat (Mussaed Ahmed al- Jarrah) suspected of directing support to two al-Qaeda hijackers in the September 11, 2001 on the United States. The mistake about the identity of the Saudi Embassy official was made in a declaration by an FBI official (Jill Sandborn) in response to a lawsuit by families’ of 9/11 victims who accused Saudi Arabia’s government of involvement in the attacks. The Trump administration and justice department had been going to extraordinary length to protect those involved. This was the first public confirmation that there was assistance by a Saudi government diplomat and revives the questions about Saudi’ Arabia’s link to the 9/11 plot.
On the eve of the anniversary of the 9/11 attacks, September 10, 2020, a federal judge (Netburn) directed the Saudi Arabian government to make as many as 24 current and former officials available for depositions about their possible knowledge of events leading up to the airplane attacks of Sept. 11, 2001, which killed almost 3,000 Americans. Those officials include Prince Bandar, the former ambassador to the United States, and his longtime chief of staff.
The order was immediately hailed by families of the 9/11 victims as a milestone in their years-long effort to prove that some Saudi officials were either complicit in the attacks or aware of the kingdom’s support for some of the hijackers in the months before they hijacked four American airliners and crashed three of them into the World Trade Towers and the Pentagon.