Sudan’s state news agency says the country will pay damages to the families of 17 American sailors killed in a 2000 suicide blast claimed by al-Qaida. Sudan, at the time under the Islamist rule of Omar al-Bashir, had nothing to do with the attack against the USS Cole, a destroyer that was refueling in the Yemeni port of Aden. US law, however, allowed the families to sue countries on Washington’s list of terror-supporting states. Khartoum has been on that list since 1993. The families sued, and Sudan, failing to offer a defense, was ordered by a judge to hand over about $35 million in damages. With Bashir having been toppled last April, the country appears headed toward democratic rule and is now trying to have itself removed from the list. There was no official word on the size of the settlement, but news reports have placed it at $30 million.
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