The long-classified pages detailing alleged ties of the Saudi Arabian government to the 9/11 hijackers will be released by Congress as early as Friday, sources told CNN Thursday.
Known as the “28 pages,” the secret document was part of a 2002 congressional investigation of the Sept. 11 attacks and has been classified since the report’s completion. It turns out there are actually 29 pages, sources said.
Sources said there are still some procedural steps that need to be taken before the release, which members of both parties in Congress and family members of victims have been seeking for years.
“This is great news,” said Jerry Goldman, a lawyer who represents families of victims in a class-action suit, seeking to sue Saudi Arabia. “The families are happy just as the American people should be happy that information that has been kept hidden for well over a decade is finally coming to light.”
Former Senator Bob Graham, who chaired the committee that carried out the investigation and has been pushing the
White House to release the pages, said Thursday he was “very pleased” by the news.
“It is going to increase the questioning of the Saudis’ role supporting the hijackers,” Graham told CNN. “I think of this almost as the 28 pages are sort of the cork in the wine bottle. And once it’s out, hopefully the rest of the wine itself will start to pour out.”
Graham added, “Would the U.S. government have kept information that was just speculation away from American people for 14 years if somebody didn’t think it was going to make a difference?”
Rep. Adam Schiff, a member of the House Intelligence Committee, said the report will be posted on line soon.
“The House Intelligence Committee will get the redacted report today or tomorrow,” the California Democrat said. “The Senate and House intel committees should then give the formal go ahead to release the report since they originally produced it.”
Under pressure from the victims’ families and lawmakers, President Barack Obama said in April his administration would declassify the pages.