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Jordan ‘concerned’ over US ‘sponsors of terrorism’ bill

By JT - Sep 15,2016 - Last updated at Sep 15,2016

AMMAN — The government has expressed its concern over the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act recently passed by US lawmakers, because it may negatively impact international cooperation in countering terrorism, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

The US House of Representatives passed the bill, known as JASTA, last Friday, according to Reuters. The legislation would allow families of victims of the September 11 attacks in New York to sue Saudi Arabia for damages.

Petra quoted Government Spokesperson Mohammad Momani as saying that the bill would harm anti-terrorism operations “at this stage”, which require the highest levels of coordination and collaboration.

Momani, who is also minister of state for media affairs, said JASTA may contradict the principles of sovereign equality of states enshrined in the UN Charter.

Jordan, he added, “hopes that the United States Congress would reconsider this legislation”, Petra reported on Tuesday.

JASTA would remove sovereign immunity, preventing lawsuits against governments, for countries found to be involved in terrorist attacks on US soil, according to Reuters.

The White House has threatened to veto the measure.

On Wednesday, the speaker of the Saudi Shura Council, Abdullah Al Al Sheikh said the legislation “sets a dangerous precedent in the field of international relations", noting that it risks “triggering chaos and instability in international relations and might contribute to supporting extremism”.

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