Lockerbie bomber Megrahi dies; who sighs with relief?

Standard

I expect Megrahi’s cousin, Abdulah al Senussi, will be breathing a sigh of relief at this news, from his own sick-bed in Mauritania. Even at the risk of perjuring his previous testimony, Megrahi represented an unknown risk, as he could have provided evidence to the National Transitional Council of Senussi’s misdeeds during his tenure as head of Libyan Intelligence.

I read just today a report asserting that Megrahi had achieved pariah status even among his own powerful Megrah tribe in Libya, where his association with the Gaddafi regime and the Lockerbie disaster was an unwelcome reminder of times people would rather leave behind.

Last September, it emerged that former UK Prime Minister Tony Blair had raised Megrahi’s case in talks with Gaddafi in 2008 and 2009 in Libya, shortly before Megrahi was freed. At the time, Libya was threatening to sever commercial links with Britain if Megrahi was not released.

And in France, the scandal revealed by Mediapart over Sarkozy being either offered, or receiving, funds from Gaddafi for his previous election campaign caused an uproar.

Now I wonder if the grieving family will face internal or even external pressure to reveal details about Megrahi and his associations. They say dead men tell no tales, but their families can still spill the dirt.

Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the only person convicted over the 1988 Lockerbie bombing above Scotland which killed 270 people, has died at his home in the Libyan capital Tripoli. Photo: BBC/Reuters

Megrahi Died at home

His brother Abdulhakim said on Sunday that Megrahi’s health had deteriorated quickly and he died at home in Tripoli.

He told the AFP news agency that Megrahi died at 13:00 local time (11:00 GMT).

The BBC’s Rana Jawad, who is outside Megrahi’s home in Tripoli, says family members are making preparations to receive guests paying their condolences.

Megrahi’s sister told the Libyan Wal news agency that his funeral would take place at Tripoli’s main cemetery on Monday, following early afternoon prayers.

Megrahi, a Libyan intelligence officer, always denied any responsibility for the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 in December 1988.

It remains the deadliest terrorist incident ever to have taken place on British soil.

All 259 people aboard the plane, which was travelling from London to New York, were killed, along with 11 others on the ground.

via BBC News

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s