Families of victims from 9/11 tell Biden not to attend events unless he releases information

Terrorist on Sept. 11, 2001, highjacked planes to hit U.S. targets, killing nearly 3,000 people.
Image
9/11 memorial in New York City
9/11 memorial in New York City
(Spencer Platt / Getty Images)

Families of 9/11 victims have told President Biden not to attend any of their memorial events unless he declassifies information on Saudi Arabia's role in the terrorist attack that killed nearly 3,000 on U.S. soil 20 years ago.

The call for declassification comes after Biden as a candidate had promised to be more transparent when it came to the Sept. 11, 2001, attack and the role of Saudi Arabian leaders.

“We cannot in good faith, and with veneration to those lost, sick, and injured, welcome the president to our hallowed grounds until he fulfills his commitment,” the family members wrote in a statement, obtained by NBC News.

The family members allege that the U.S. government, including Biden, is keeping information about the attacks secret that would show Saudi Arabian leaders were supportive of the attacks, in which terrorist highjacked four planes – slamming two into the World Trade Center towers in New York City and one into the Pentagon, outside of Washington, D.C. Passengers downed the fourth in a field in the Shanksville, Pa., area.

The 9/11 commission report found Saudi Arabia had been a problematic ally when it came to sharing secrets, but did not find any evidence that tied Saudi leaders to the attacks. The Saudi government has denied any role in the attacks.

“The Commission staff found no evidence that the Saudi government as an institution or as individual senior officials knowingly support or supported al Qaeda; however, a lack of awareness of the problem and a failure to conduct oversight over institutions created an environment in which such activity has flourished,” the report said.

A White House spokesperson on Friday said the Office of Public Engagement and the National Security Council staff have met with family members of 9/11 victims to discuss their document requests. The spokesperson also said Biden has vowed to bring the request to the Justice Department, NBC News reports.