• iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- It might be a hollow victory but it's a victory nonetheless for relatives of victims of the Sept. 11 terror attacks.A federal judge in New York on Tuesday ordered Iran to pay billions of dollars to parents, spouses, siblings and children of more than 1,000 9/11 victims, court documents obtained by ABC News show.The default judgment issued by Judge George B. Daniels finds the Islamic Republic of Iran, the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps and the Central Bank of the Islamic Republic of Iran are liable for the deaths of 1,008 people whose families sued.The lawsuit, which was first filed in 2004 and allowed to go forward in 2016 after Congress passed Justice Against Sponsors of Terrorism Act to open sovereign states accused of terrorism to liability, alleged Iran provided assistance, including training, to the 9/11 hijackers even though the 9/11 Commission found no direct evidence of Iranian support.The judge set damage awards according to the following scale: $12.5 million per spouse, $8.5 million per parent, $8.5 million per child and $4.25 million per sibling.The plaintiffs may apply for punitive damages at a later date, the judge’s order said.“In December 2011, a New York federal court held a hearing and found that the evidence presented established that Iran’s provision of material support to al-Qaeda was a cause of the 9/11 attacks and the resulting damage, injuries, and deaths,” said attorney Robert Haefele of Motley Rice LLC, who represents the plaintiffs.“It is difficult for those injured or left behind to ignore the findings of the federal court about Iran’s culpability," Haefele continued. "But those findings should not overshadow the mountain of evidence presented against Saudi Arabia, which remains central to the plaintiffs’ case.”However, the judgment is largely symbolic. Iran has never responded to the lawsuit and is unlikely to ever pay.The order does make the families eligible to collect from a small fund of seized Iranian assets that has been used in the past to compensate families of victims of Hezbollah attacks and other violence attributed to Iran.The judgment is part of the larger case the 9/11 families are pursuing against Saudi Arabia. There’s a conference in that case later this month.
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  • Steve Back/Getty Images(LONDON) -- With less than three weeks before the royal wedding, Britain’s Royal Mint today released a special commemorative coin to mark the occasion.
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(SAU PAULO) --  A massive fire engulfed two high-rise structures in Sao Paulo, Brazil, on Tuesday, causing one of the buildings to collapse.
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  • iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The first migrants from the much-publicized caravan that had been making its way through Mexico for the previous few weeks are now being processed, according to authorities.
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  • Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said Monday Israel had obtained thousands of Iranian documents detailing Tehran’s past nuclear weapons development program and showing what he said was a failure by Iran to declare those activities before signing on to an international nuclear agreement.In an elaborate and sometimes theatrical presentation including full-screen slides and video clips of various Iranian leaders denying the existence of a nuclear weapons program, Netanyahu spoke first in English and then in Hebrew.He presented as evidence of Iran’s nuclear weapons initiative a trove of documents he said were acquired by Israeli intelligence from a secret storage location in south Tehran."Here's what the files included: incriminating documents, incriminating charts, incriminating presentations, incriminating blueprints, incriminating photos, incriminating videos and more," Netanyahu said, even though the documents showed dates that appeared to indicate past Iranian behavior rather than action taken since the agreement went into place in 2015.The remarks came before a May 12 deadline when U.S. President Donald Trump is set to decide on whether to withdraw from the international deal on Iran's nuclear program.“This is a terrible deal," Netanyahu said. "It should never have been concluded. And in a few days’ time, President Trump will decide -- will make his decision on what to do on the nuclear deal. I’m sure he’ll do the right thing -- the right thing for the United States, the right thing for Israel, and the right thing for the peace of the world.”Tehran attacked the speech hours before it was even delivered, referencing Netanyahu’s repeated rejection of the Iran nuclear agreement.Referencing a 2012 speech Netanyahu delivered at the United Nations General Assembly, Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Zarif called Netanyahu the "boy who can't stop crying wolf.”During a White House press conference with his counterpart from Nigeria, Trump was asked if he will pull the U.S. out of the deal.“I’m not telling you what I’m doing, but that doesn’t mean I won’t negotiate a new deal. We’ll see what happens," Trump said shortly after Netanyahu concluded his presentation.Zarif replied that Trump was "jumping on a rehash of old allegations."
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  • @RFERL/Twitter(KABUL) -- Nine journalists were killed in dual blasts in Kabul, Afghanistan, on Monday morning.The health ministry in Afghanistan released the names and affiliations of the nine journalists who were killed:Shah Marai, a longtime photographer for Agence France-Presse (AFP)Ebadullah Hananzai, from Radio Free EuropeSabawoon Kakar, from Radio Free EuropeYar Mohammad Tokhi, a Tolonews cameramanGhazi Rasooli, a 1TV reporterNowrooz Rajabj, a 1TV cameramanSaleem Talash, a Mashal TV reporterMahram Durani, a journalist from Shamsad TVAli Salimi, a Mashal TV cameraman.ISIS has since claimed responsibility for the Kabul attacks, which left at least 25 people dead and 45 others injured.The regional program director of the Committee to Protect Journalists released a statement on the bombing, calling it "a reminder of the extreme dangers to media workers" in Afghanistan.Steven Butler, CPJ's Asia program coordinator said the attack shows "the extreme dangers to media workers in that country and of the extremely brutal tactics used there by enemies of the free press."A man who rose through the ranksMarai, 41, was one of the most prominent journalists to be killed. He is survived by six children, the youngest of which is a 15-day-old daughter.An essay that he wrote for the AFP in 2016 was re-released today.In it, he describes his career at the AFP, which started as a fixer and driver in 1996. He moved up the ranks and was ultimately named as the agency's chief photographer in Kabul.He wrote that while there had been good periods, "there is no more hope.""Every morning as I go to the office and every evening when I return home, all I think of are cars that can be booby-trapped, or of suicide bombers coming out of a crowd. I can’t take the risk," he wrote."I have never felt life to have so little prospects and I don’t see a way out. It’s a time of anxiety," he continued.The New York Times reported that Marai's family was predisposed to blindness and he had three blind brothers and two blind children.AFP chairman Fabrice Fries issued a statement offering condolences to Marai's family and the families of the others killed in the attack.“This tragedy reminds us of the danger that our teams continually face on the ground and the essential role journalists play for democracy. Journalists were targeted by this attack,” Fries said.
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