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US, plaintiffs reach settlement on Iran-linked NY skyscraper

The US government has agreed to distribute proceeds from the sale of a Manhattan skyscraper linked to Iran to families who were affected by attacks aided by the Islamic republic, according to a court document filed Thursday.
The settlement between the Department of Justice and the families marks the latest step in a long-running case over ties between the Manhattan building at 650 Fifth Avenue and Iran.
The skyscraper was majority owned by the Alavi Foundation, a non-profit organization that promotes Islamic culture and the Persian language. The 36-story, 382,500 square-foot building stands at the corner of Fifth Avenue and West 52nd Street, near Rockefeller Center and St. Patrick's Cathedral.
In a 2009 lawsuit, the Manhattan US Attorney's office claimed the Alavi Foundation was controlled by Iran. It also said two minority owners, Assa Corp and Assa Co Ltd, were shell companies backed by Iran's Bank Melli.
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