The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear an unusual case in which American victims of a 1997 terror attack in Israel are seeking seizure of Iranian artifacts currently housed in Chicago’s Field Museum to satisfy a $71.5 million civil judgment awarded in 2003.

The attack occurred nearly 20 years ago, on September 4, 1997, when three suicide bombers from the Palestinian fundamentalist organization Hamas blew themselves up at the Ben Yeduda pedestrian mall in Jerusalem. Led by plaintiff Jenny Rubin, eight US citizens and their families sued Iran—the alleged sponsor of the attack—in federal court in Washington, DC. The claim applies the terrorism exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA), a law that establishes the limitations as to whether a foreign sovereignty can be sued in US courts. read more