Sudan wants lawsuit over Cole bombing to be dismissed

The families allege that the Sudanese government provided support, including money and training, that allowed al-Qaida to attack the Norfolk-based destroyer in the harbor of Aden, Yemen, on Oct. 12, 2000.

Knox Bemis, a lawyer for Sudan, told a three-judge panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals that the lawsuit should be thrown out because it does not directly connect the East African nation's alleged support of al-Qaida to the bombing.

The families' attorney, Andrew C. Hall, argued that such specifics do not have to be established until the case goes to trial.

Bemis "suggests you've got to get into evidentiary detail," Hall said. "That's not so. We've more than met our burden."

Sudan is appealing a decision by U.S. District Judge Robert G. Doumar to allow the lawsuit to go forward. The families are seeking $105 million (Ђ81.7 million), which Hall said could be paid through Sudanese assets frozen by the U.S. government, the AP reports.

Several relatives of victims attended the hearing and spoke to reporters outside the courthouse.