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U.S. terror victims want Iran antiquities

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CHICAGO, Dec 13, 2005 (UPI via COMTEX) -- A group of U.S. victims of a Jerusalem terror bombing wants to seize Iranian antiquities at the University of Chicago for their pain and suffering.

Two years ago, the group won a $71 million judgment against Iran for injuries in a 1997 Iranian-linked suicide bombing in Jerusalem. Iran has ignored the ruling, and the victims are now going after ancient clay tablets dating from about 500 B.C., held by the university's Oriental Institute.

However, the institute is fighting the group, saying that setting a precedent by turning over the antiquities to the victims could endanger U.S.-owned museum pieces on loan to other countries, the Chicago Sun-Times reported.

The U.S. Justice Department has sided with the University of Chicago, saying because the artifacts are being held "solely for research and study, and are not used by Iran for commercial activity in the United States, they are also not available for attachment" under law.


Copyright 2005 by United Press International

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