9/11 Families United Welcomes Former President Trump’s Renewed Commitment to 9/11 Transparency & Accountability

Calls on Congress to Swiftly Pass Critical Legislation Supporting Victims of Terrorism

Washington, D.C. – 9/11 Families United, which consists of over 10,000 victims’ family members, survivors, and those who were injured in or sickened from the worst terrorist attacks in American history, released a statement today welcoming former President Trump’s renewed commitment to full government transparency around the 9/11 attacks and called on Congress to pass bipartisan counterterrorism legislation to meet that commitment.

In a new interview that former President Donald J. Trump gave to “Fox & Friends Weekend,” Fox host Rachel Campos-Duffy pointed out that “Americans have lost a lot of trust in institutions” and noted that “some people think the way we rebuild trust is to declassify things.”  She then asked the former President point blank, “[I]f you were President again would you declassify the 9/11 files?” President Trump quickly answered in the affirmative.  

In response to the former President’s latest remarks this weekend, Terry Strada, National Chair of 9/11 Families United, said, “The 9/11 community appreciates President Trump’s renewed commitment to full transparency around 9/11 and his acknowledgment once again that there has never been a full accounting for the worst terrorist attack in American history. We ask President Trump to encourage his allies in Congress to pass bipartisan legislation, introduced in both the House and the Senate but currently being opposed by the Biden Administration, that supports the 9/11 community’s years-long fight for justice.” 

As a candidate for President in 2016, Trump, on multiple occasions, accused the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia of being behind the 9/11 attacks. “Who blew up the World Trade Center?” Trump said in a February 17, 2016, interview on Fox News. “It wasn’t the Iraqis, it was Saudi — take a look at Saudi Arabia, open the documents.” Trump’s remarks this weekend also echoed what he said in 2022 that “Nobody has gotten to the bottom of 9/11 unfortunately, and they should have,” calling the people who carried out the terrorist attack “maniacs that did that horrible thing to our city, to our country, to the world.”

Although much of it has been kept sealed under a protective order in the landmark civil lawsuit the 9/11 community filed against the Kingdom in 2016, recent declassified U.S. intelligence agencies’ investigative documents confirm that core elements of the Saudi government, including the Ministry of Islamic Affairs operating within the Saudi Embassy in Washington D.C., and certain Saudi funded Mosques in the U.S. were deeply intertwined with al Qaeda in the decade leading up to the September 11, 2001 attacks and provided al Qaeda with financial and logistical support that enabled them to plan and carry out their deadly mission. At least seven

Saudi government agents, some with falsified diplomatic credentials provided by the Kingdom, were implicated in the FBI’s investigation of the support network for the first arriving hijackers, many of whom had other connections to al Qaeda and terrorism.

“President Trump’s renewed commitment to transparency is also important because, at this moment, high-priced lobbyists for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia are actively fighting to block bipartisan legislation, the Ensuring Justice for Victims of Terrorism Act (EJVTA). This legislation is critical to our years-long fight for transparency and accountability because it reaffirms the intent of Congress when it passed the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA) in 2016, which then-candidate Trump voiced support for, ensuring American victims of terrorism can hold accountable any nation that sponsors a terrorist attack on U.S soil,” Strada continued.  

“The 9/11 community is counting on our elected leaders in both parties to stand against the Kingdom’s lobbying campaign to weaken U.S. counterterrorism law and join together to move the EJVTA forward as soon as possible,” Strada concluded.  


Click Here to learn more about the EJVTA and to see a September 2023 letter signed by thousands of 9/11 community members to Congress in support of this legislation.

As U.S. Senator John Cornyn (R-TX), the lead Senate Republican sponsor of both JASTA and the EJVTA explained recently: 

  • By making minor technical edits, this bill makes sure JASTA works the way it was intended to, reaffirms our commitment to holding sponsors of terrorism accountable, and ensures victims’ families can continue to seek justice against those who perpetrated these horrific acts.” [Click Here For More]

Additional Background:

  • The EJVTA is a modest, technical corrections bill to address three drafting oversights in the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) and the Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act (JASTA).  These technical corrections break no new policy ground but simply:
  • reaffirm that the ATA’s aiding and abetting liability cause of action applies to foreign states; 
  • provide that those facing judgments face the routine execution procedures in like cases and; 
  • ensure that all damaged and injured parties can bring their claims.
  • The EJVTA is supported by over 99% of September 11 victims’ family members, injured survivors, and those who are sick and dying from 9/11-related illnesses—more than 10,000 Americans seeking justice for the murder of their loved ones and injured survivors.
  • These technical corrections do not relate to President Obama’s ill-advised veto of JASTA in 2016, which Congress quickly overrode (97-1; 348-77). President Obama had concerns about the sovereign immunity portions of the bill, predicting dire international consequences that never materialized in any form whatsoever. President Obama did not express any objections to the provisions addressed by the EJVTA, nor did those who supported his veto.

Since JASTA’s passage, the 9/11 community has been pursuing justice and accountability in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York. That court’s misinterpretations of JASTA have made EJVTA necessary.

About 9/11 Families United: 

9/11 Families United is an organization consisting of family members of those murdered in the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, as well as many of those who survived, were injured or sickened from the attacks. This community numbers well over 10,000.  More information is at www.911familiesunited.org