News ID: 316182
Published: 0215 GMT September 10, 2021
‘It’s time we expose the truth’

9/11 families see a turning point in fight to reveal alleged Saudi role

9/11 families see a turning point in fight to reveal alleged Saudi role

Twenty years after he narrowly escaped the World Trade Center's South Tower, Timothy Frolich is going back to ground zero for the first time to mark the anniversary of the deadliest attack on U.S. soil.

Frolich's visit to the site isn't just about commemorating the day that transformed his life and the lives of many other Americans. He hopes it will also be about what's next: The likely release of new details about Saudi Arabia's alleged role in the attacks – information the U.S. government has fought for years to keep secret, USA Today reported.

Under pressure from 9/11 victims and their families, President Joe Biden on Sept. 3 directed the Justice Department and other federal agencies to declassify some documents from the FBI's investigation into the terrorist attacks.

Terry Strada, whose husband was killed in the North Tower on Sept. 11, hailed Biden's order as a potential "turning point" in the victims' efforts to shed light on whether and how Saudi government officials may have supported the hijackers.

"The 9/11 families certainly should know the truth about who is responsible for the murder of our loved ones, but the American people deserve to know ... just as much as we do," said Strada, who is among hundreds of 9/11 families suing the Saudi government for compensation.

"We've had roadblocks for the last 20 years whenever the kingdom was involved. It’s time we expose the truth," she said.

The Saudi government has long denied any involvement in the attacks and recently said it welcomes Biden's declassification decision.

But Strada and others say there is already a significant trove of information suggesting at least low-level Saudi officials had some role in supporting two of the 19 hijackers.

Fifteen of the 19 hijackers were Saudi nationals, as was Osama bin Laden, the founder of Al-Qaeda terrorist group that plotted and executed the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks from a safe haven in Afghanistan.


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