Senate OKs terror accountability bill

The U.S. Senate passed a bill that would help victims of terror pursue governments that assist terrorists.

The legislation, part of the 2008 Department of Defense Authorization bill, would limit the appeal options for states found liable in U.S. courts for backing terrorism.

The bill particularly targets Iran, which has yet to pay the $2.7 billion in damages awarded to families of the 241 servicemen killed in a 1983 attack by the Iranian-backed terrorist group Hezbollah on a U.S. Marines barrack in Beirut.

Sens. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.) and Arlen Specter (R-Pa.) drafted the bill, which on Dec. 12 passed the House of Representatives by a vote of 370-49. The bill awaits President Bush’s signature.

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