The Lord Advocate and the relatives of the victims of the Lockerbie bombing have been refused access to the latest interview with the man convicted of the atrocity.

Following the Reuters interview with Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al Megrahi, he was accused of admitting his guilt for the first time by saying his name had been “exaggerated” by the West.

A number of Arabic translators have disagreed with this interpretation. In the midst of the row the Crown formally asked Dumfries and Galloway Police to obtain and translate the full Arabic interview. 

Relatives have also asked for the recording but have been told they would require a court order. There are edited clips on the news organisation’s website. This is the first full interview with Megrahi since The Herald interviewed him in Tripoli two years ago.

Megrahi says he played no part in the tragedy which killed 270 people in 1988. 

A Crown Office spokesman said: “We can confirm that Reuters have refused to provide a copy of the recent interview with Megrahi. We have instructed translation of the available footage meantime and are considering options in relation to the unreleased footage.” 

A spokeswoman for Reuters said: “Reuters has been contacted by Dumfries and Galloway Police, but has not received a formal demand for any footage. 

“We will review any such formal request if we receive one, although we would point out that Reuters footage from the interview with Abdelbaset al Megrahi and additional reporting are available for all to view on
“As one of the world’s leading news organisations, Reuters takes integrity and accuracy of its news reporting very seriously and we stand by our coverage of the exclusive interview with Abdelbaset al Megrahi.”