JASTA runs counter to le­gal prin­ci­ples: Aca­demics

Kuwait Times - - LOCAL -

KUWAIT:

Two Kuwaiti pro­fes­sors agreed Thurs­day evening that the US Jus­tice Against Spon­sors of Ter­ror­ism Act (JASTA) vi­o­lates the ba­sic prin­ci­ples of the in­ter­na­tional law and re­la­tions. Dr Ab­dul­lah Al-Shaiji, pro­fes­sor of po­lit­i­cal sci­ence at Kuwait Univer­sity, ar­gued that the JASTA lacks many le­gal prin­ci­ples and poses a threat to for­eign in­vest­ment in the United States.

Speak­ing at a sym­po­sium on ‘the USGCC re­la­tions un­der JASTA’ on the side­lines of Kuwait In­ter­na­tional Book Fair, Dr AlShaiji said sev­eral coun­tries re­duced their in­vest­ments from the United States fol­low­ing the pass­ing of the con­tro­ver­sial act ear­lier this year.

“The act has had a neg­a­tive im­pact on the anti-ter­ror co­op­er­a­tion as well,” he pointed out. “The United States will bear the brunt of the JASTA back­fire if the act takes forces since there are signs that some coun­tries started mulling tit-for-tat leg­is­la­tions,” he cau­tioned. Dr Al-Shaiji ex­pected that the new US ad­min­is­tra­tion and Con­gress will re­con­sider the act.

Mean­while, KU pro­fes­sor of in­ter­na­tional law Dr Ah­mad Al-Sam­dan agreed that JASTA lacks the sim­plest le­gal prin­ci­ples. “It is to­tally un­jus­ti­fi­able to sue a country for in­di­vid­ual be­hav­iors by its na­tion­als as long as there is no ev­i­dence of di­rect or in­di­rect in­volve­ment by its gov­ern­ment in any crime,” he stressed.

“JASTA will have ad­verse po­lit­i­cal and eco­nomic im­pacts on the United States which will def­i­nitely lose the con­fi­dence of many part­ners around the world,” Sam­dan warned. The act, passed by the US Con­gress in Septem­ber, en­ti­tles the fam­i­lies of Septem­ber 11 victims to sue for­eign gov­ern­ments for dam­ages. The 41st edi­tion of Kuwait In­ter­na­tional Book Fair opened on Novem­ber 16 and lasts un­til Satur­day; it gath­ered 565 pub­lish­ers from 30 coun­tries. —KUNA

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