The jury verdict is awaited this week in the multibillion New York federal court landmark terrorism trial against the Palestinian Authority, brought by the families of 33 American citizens killed and hundreds wounded in the second Palestinian uprising between 2001 and 2004. The trial is closely watched in Ramallah lest its outcome jeopardize the PA’s war crimes case against Israel at the Hague international court, as well as landing it with a hefty bill for damages.
The lawyer representing the victims’ families Nitsana Darshan-Leitner presented evidence that Palestinian Authority security men helped plan or carry out the deadly shootings and suicide bombings of unarmed civilians a decade ago, notably the bombing of a packed cafeteria at Jerusalem's Hebrew University, in which many of the victims were American students. "Those involved in the attacks still receive salaries from the Palestinian Authority and still get promoted in rank while in jail," she said. Families of suicide bombers receive monthly salaries from a Palestinian "martyrs foundation.”
The PA and the PLO responded that they were not privy to the attacks and they could not be held liable for the actions of the suicide bombers and gunmen, whom they said "acted on their own."