Estado sudanés sería enjuiciable por el caso del USS Cole

NORFOLK, Virginia (AP) — Families of the 17 sailors killed in a terrorist attack on the USS Cole can pursue a lawsuit against the government of Sudan, a federal judge decided.
U.S. District Court Judge Robert G. Doumar said Tuesday that there was enough evidence that the Sudanese government cooperated with al Qaeda and its leader, Osama bin Laden, to allow the lawsuit to go forward.
«I find that there are facts sufficient to say: They’re sort of partners and therefore I would allow (the suit) to go forward,» Doumar said during a hearing on Sudan’s request to dismiss the suit.
He added that he will formalize the ruling with a written opinion.
The families accuse Sudan of providing support, including diplomatic pouches used to carry explosives, and financing for the October 12, 2000, attack while the destroyer was in the harbor of Aden, Yemen.
The suit alleges the East African nation allowed an al Qaeda operative to ship four crates of explosives to Yemen before the bombing. It accuses the president of Sudan of authorizing bin Laden’s entry into the country and of not requiring him to pay taxes.
The suit also contends that bin Laden and Sudan operated joint businesses and a bank that provided financing for the Cole attack.
«Sudan provided no support for the bombing of the Cole,» Washington attorney Knox Bemis said, before being cut off by Doumar, who questioned the bank connection and why Sudan would allow operatives to come in and out of the country freely.
None of the family members appeared in court Tuesday.
«They’re dealing with it by not dealing with it,» Andrew C. Hall, a Miami attorney representing the families, said after the hearing.
The case is scheduled for trial March 7, but Hall said it probably would be delayed.
The families are seeking $105 million from the Sudanese government, which attorneys hope will be paid through Sudanese assets that were frozen by the U.S. government.
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