Calls to release 28 classified pages about Sept. 11 attacks, Saudi links investigation

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Jim Hoffer investigates.

A 9/11 Congressional Committee investigated whether there were terror links to Saudi Arabia, but that portion of the report is classified by the government; fearing release could hurt U.S. relationships with a key Middle East ally.

Now there are growing calls for the secret report to be made public.

Specifically we're talking about 28 pages that look at what if any relationship existed between the 9/11 hijackers and the Saudi Government.

These pages are the only part of the report kept hidden from the public.

There's a bill in Congress that could change that if only New York's delegation would get behind it.

For nearly 13 years, a portion of this Congressional Report on the 9/11 attacks has been kept from the public.

28 pages classified as top secret by President Bush who vowed those responsible for the attacks would be held to account.

The Former head of the 9-11 Inquiry who has read the "secret" pages says it's time to live up to that promise.

"Collectively they tell us that the hijackers did not operate alone. That there was a support network which facilitated their ability to carry out such a complicated and heinous assault as 9/11. And, they tell us that Saudi Arabia was the premier part of that support network," said Bob Graham, a former senator.

Former Senator Graham believes the pages have remained classified to keep Americans from knowing the depth of Saudi involvement in 9/11.

15 of the 19 hijackers were Saudi nationals. Saudi Arabia has repeatedly denied any connection. This House Resolution calls on the president to declassify the 28 pages.

"We deserve to find out the truth of what happened," said Kathy Owens, a 9/11 widow.

Kathy Owens was left to raise three children alone after her husband; Peter who worked for Cantor Fitzgerald was killed on 9/11.

"It's been 14 years, we still don't have the full story about what happened," Owens said.

Kathy Owens' and other 9/11 families are upset that not one of the current co-sponsors of the resolution to declassify the secret documents is from the New York delegation.

"What do you notice about the list of sponsor?" Eyewitness News Investigative Reporter Jim Hoffer asked.

"No one from the tri-state area, the area hardest hit is signed on to support us," Hoffer said.

"Do you know if they'd vote for this?" Hoffer asked.

"You would think they would, why wouldn't they? You'd think they would," Owens said.

Out of 27 Representatives from New York, only two, Charlie Rangel and Louise Slaughter support the resolution to declassify the 28 pages.

The rest of the New York delegation is either undecided or has not responded to Eyewitness News' repeated attempts to find out where they stand on releasing these classified documents pages.

The lone exception is Congressman Peter King who told us why he's against public disclosure.

"I'm on intelligence committee, I've read the 28 pages, I can't go into the reasons why I think they shouldn't be disclosed, I understand frustration of the families of those who died on 9/11, I know they have questions about the Saudis over the years, but I think this time it would be wrong on this occasion to make those pages public," said Rep. Peter King, (R) Long Island.

"Imagine if George Bush stood on the pile and said the people who took the buildings down will hear from us now except for Saudi Arabia, we have to give them a pass because they are our buddies. That would have been unthinkable but that's what's happening," Owens said.

We reached out to the White House to see where President Obama stands on this. A spokesman said the president has asked the Intelligence Community to review the pages to see whether the classified information can be publicly released.

Just a few weeks ago, Republican Presidential Candidate Rand Paul introduced a measure in the Senate calling for public disclosure; both Senators Gillibrand and Schumer support it.
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newsJim Hoffer investigatesthe investigatorsseptember 11september 11thterrorismNew York City
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