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By Patricia Zengerle WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. Senate on Wednesday overwhelmingly rejected President Barack Obama's veto of legislation allowing relatives of the victims of the Sept. 11 attacks to sue Saudi Arabia, paving the way for the first veto override of his eight-year presidency. The final vote was 97-1 against the veto, a blow to Saudi Arabia, a frequent U.S. partner in the Middle East recently subject to harsh criticism in the U.S. Congress. Democratic Minority Leader Harry Reid was the only senator to side with Obama.
The BUK missile system blamed for shooting down flight MH17 over east Ukraine, killing all 298 people on board, is an anti-aircraft weapon whose origins date back to the Soviet era. BUK -- which means "Beech" in Russian -- first fully entered service with the Red Army in 1980, and has been exported to many countries, including North Korea and Syria. Up to six BUK missiles can be fired simultaneously from a launch vehicle -- usually either a military truck or a tank -- on targets flying on different bearings, according to the London-based Jane's defence and intelligence group.