NYC court rejects Israeli rocket victims' bid to sue Al Jazeera
The plaintiffs were asking for $1.2 billion in damages, claiming the news network helped Hezbollah militants target their rockets more accurately.
Victims of 2006 rocket strikes on Israel cannot sue Al Jazeera on grounds the broadcaster intentionally helped Hezbollah attack civilians by reporting the sites of explosions, a U.S. judge ruled this week.
The Israeli plaintiffs, who were asking for $1.2 billion in damages from Al Jazeera, said the Qatar-based news network helped Hezbollah militants target their rockets more accurately during the 34-day war with Israel.
The lawsuit, filed a year ago, argued that a Manhattan court had jurisdiction over the case because U.S. citizens had been harmed.
"Plaintiffs have offered no facts suggesting that defendant even knew that it was providing anything to Hezbollah," said Manhattan Federal Court Judge Kimba Wood. The victims "have offered no facts suggesting that Hezbollah viewed defendant's broadcasts," she added.
The plaintiffs - American, Israeli and Canadian citizens who were injured or saw family members killed in the attacks - argued that Al Jazeera intentionally helped Hezbollah by broadcasting in real-time the precise locations and results of the group's rocket campaign.
One plaintiff said in the original complaint that she had a miscarriage as a result of a rocket explosion near her home. Another said he "saw his wife torn to pieces."
Their lawyer, Robert Joseph Tolchin, could not be immediately reached for comment. A lawyer for Al Jazeera declined to comment.
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