Court refuses PLO appeal

washington (ap) | The Supreme Court refused this week to overturn a $116 million judgment against the Palestine Liberation Organization in the deaths of a Jewish couple near the West Bank.

The PLO and its governmental entity had been sued in federal court in Rhode Island over the 1996 drive-by shooting of Yaron Ungar, an American citizen, and his Israeli wife, Efrat, as the couple returned home from a wedding.

The family’s relatives argued that the PLO and Palestinian Authority provided a safe haven and operational base for the Islamic militant group Hamas, which was responsible for the attack. A judge issued a default judgment after the PLO did not respond to requests for depositions from Yasser Arafat and others.

Former Attorney General Ramsey Clark, the lawyer for the PLO, told justices in the appeal last month that Ungar relatives have ‘commenced sweeping national and international efforts’ to collect the millions of dollars, including an attempt to seize Palestine’s U.N. Mission building in New York.

The case is Palestine Liberation Organization v. Ungar, 05-510.