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GCC Raises Concerns over Congress’ 9/11-Inspired Bill | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) logo is seen during a meeting in Manama, Bahrain April 7, 2016. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

The Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) on Monday condemned a law passed by the United States Congress last week that would allow the families of victims of the Sept. 11 attacks to sue the Saudi government for damages.

The Congress-passed bill raised many concerns, considering that it breaches internationally recognized customs and principals.

The head of the six-nation GCC said the law was “contrary to the foundations and principles of relations between states and the principle of sovereign immunity enjoyed by states.”

“Such laws will negatively affect the international efforts and international cooperation to combat terrorism,” GCC Secretary General Abdullatif al-Zayani said in a statement.

Moreover, al-Zayani expressed hopes on the U.S. casting the bill aside and not moving it into implementation. He added that if put into effect, the bill would then become a very dangerous precedent that threatens international ties shared with the U.S.

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the “Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act,” known as JASTA, on Friday but the White House has threatened to veto the measure.

The measure would allow attack survivors and relatives of terror victims to pursue cases in federal court against foreign governments and demand compensation if such governments are proven to bear some responsibility for attacks on U.S. soil.

Votes from two-thirds of the members in the House and Senate would be needed to override a veto by President Barack Obama.