[Today’s edition of The Daily Telegraph contains a letter from Dr Jim Swire headlined A fair Lockerbie trial. It reads as follows:]
When I met the Libyan attorney general in 1991 following the indictments of two Libyans over the Lockerbie bombing, he was incensed because the West frustrated his attempts to put them on trial there by refusing to share the evidence against them. No one outside Libya trusted the Gaddafi regime’s justice system.
Like America and Britain, Libya was a signatory to the International Civil Aviation Organisation of the UN, which provided for those accused of crimes against civil aircraft to be tried in their own countries. The only reachable solution was a trial under Scots law at Zeist in Holland.
With Rev John Mosey – who had also lost a daughter on the flight – I sat through all the Zeist evidence: it did not convince us that the Libyan, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, had been involved. More disturbing information relevant to that verdict has accumulated since.
Some of us now feel that we cannot trust the West’s justice system either. After the removal of Gaddafi, I visited the interim government in Tripoli in December 2011. It was determined to pin the blame for Lockerbie on the Gaddafi regime, believing that this reduced Libya’s blame as a country. It had no evidence for Libyan involvement other than the Zeist verdict.
Unfortunately the Scottish appeals system was dealt a further blow earlier this year when I and 24 other British relatives were blocked by the High Court judge Lord Carloway, sitting with two other judges, from requesting a further appeal against the Megrahi verdict. Apparently we could be considered “a mischief” by the Scottish system. That decision left Scottish law looking even more opaque and secretive than had previously been the case.
Since both Libya and the West seem to have failed to convince the world as to what really happened, after 27 years, we might have more confidence were these two new suspects to be handed over to an international body, such as a modified version of the International Criminal Court.