Release of Lockerbie Bomber Causes Outrage, Disgust

August 22, 2009

(ChattahBox)—The Lockerbie bomber, Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, returned home to Libya on Thursday to a crass and insensitive officially orchestrated welcome of hundreds of flag-waving Libyans, as he stepped off his plane in Tripoli. The jubilant celebration staged for a convicted terrorist responsible for the violent deaths of 270 people angered the families of the victims, most of whom were Americans.

Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi, was convicted and sentenced to life in prison for his role in the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 that exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988, killing all 270 people aboard. Scottish authorities released Megrahi, suffering from terminal prostate cancer with just three months to live, on Thursday to return home to Libya to die with his family.

Megrahi’s release and the hero’s welcome he received caused outrage both in Britain and the U.S., putting pressure on British Prime Minister Gordon Brown. British authorities are punting the responsibility to Scottish officials and the Scottish government is blaming Britain for taking a disinterested role when the decision was made to release Megrahi.

White House spokesman, Robert Gibbs, called the celebratory scenes in Tripoli “outrageous” and “disgusting.”

Both Britain and Scotland are under fire for allegedly considering lucrative Libyan oil contracts, as part of the equation in releasing Megrahi. Lord Trefgarne, chairman of the Libyan British Business Council, made a statement on Friday suggesting that Mr. Megrahi’s release was a condition for pursuing oil contracts with the Libyan government.

Foreign Minister David Miliband told the BBC that it was “a slur both on myself and the government” to suggest that oil was a factor.

Although there is no direct evidence of a deal between Libya and the UK that lucrative oil contracts would be forthcoming upon Megrahi’s release; there is no question that Britain and Scotland would benefit from renewed business relationships with oil-rich Libya.

Meanwhile, people on both sides of the Atlantic are outraged.



One Response to “Release of Lockerbie Bomber Causes Outrage, Disgust”

  1. Release of Lockerbie Bomber Causes Outrage, Disgust on August 22nd, 2009 11:49 am

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