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'Make No Mistake — We Will Never Forget': 9/11 Families Slam PGA Commissioner Jay Monahan Over Deal With Saudi-Back LIV Golf

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Jun. 6 2023, Published 4:45 p.m. ET

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The families of 9/11 victims have spoken out against and condemned the PGA Tour for merging with Saudi-backed LIV Golf, RadarOnline.com has learned.

The loved ones of those lost in the 2001 terrorist attacks issued a strong statement to PGA commissioner Jay Monahan — and vowed to "never forget" the controversial agreement.

The LIV Golf tour has been a source of controversy and thorn in the side of golf fanatics since its inception in 2021.

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Jay Monahan

The inaugural tour kicked off in 2022 and with it saw a host of established PGA players jump ship for massive payouts and less playing time.

On paper, the move appeared to be a no-brainer; however, many players and fans grappled with earning so-called blood money from the Saudi-backed tour, which saw events at Donald Trump's golf clubs.

On Tuesday, the golf world was shocked once again when it was announced that both the PGA and LIV Golf tours dropped their respective lawsuits upon reaching an agreement to merge the competing tours.

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Yasir Al-Rumayyan, who oversaw the Saudi Public Investment Fund, is the chairman of the newly combined PGA-LIV golf entity. In addition, Al-Rumayyan was also a chairman of Saudi Aramco, the state-owned oil company.

After news of the agreement and its terms were made public, a group representing 9/11 families issued a statement condemning the venture.

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Brooks Koepka, LIV Golf athlete

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"PGA Commissioner Jay Monahan co-opted the 9/11 community last year in the PGA’s unequivocal agreement that the Saudi LIV project was nothing more than sportswashing of Saudi Arabia’s reputation," read the statement from 9/11 Families United.

The group took aim at Monahan and the PGA, accusing both of "taking billions to cleanse the Saudi reputation."

"But now the PGA and Monahan appear to have become just more paid Saudi shills," the statement continued. "Taking billions of dollars to cleanse the Saudi reputation so that Americans and the world will forget how the Kingdom spent their billions of dollars before 9/11 to fund terrorism, spread their vitriolic hatred of Americans, and finance al Qaeda and the murder of our loved ones."

"Make no mistake — we will never forget," the scathing statement concluded.

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The 9/11 Families United message appeared to hit back at a previous comment made by Monahan, where he questioned if LIV athletes had to apologize for Saudi's involvement in the 9/11 terrorist attacks while they were still on the PGA tour. Monahan's tone, of course, swiftly changed on Tuesday when they merger was announced.

The PGA commissioner praised the newly formed entity with a polished statement on how "together, we can have a far greater impact on this game than we can working apart."

Monahan added that "the game of golf is better for what we’ve done here today" despite outrage from players and fans alike.

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