Wednesday, 19 October 2016

The Lockerbie petition

[What follows is an item originally posted on this blog on this date in 2010:]

Over 1,000 sign Lockerbie petition

[This is the headline over a Press Association news agency report just published on the website of the Selkirk Weekend Advertiser. It reads in part:]

More than 1,200 people have backed an independent inquiry into the conviction of the Lockerbie bomber, campaigners have revealed.

A petition was lodged at the Scottish Parliament urging ministers to look again at the 2001 trial, which saw Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed Al Megrahi become the only man to be found guilty of the 1988 terror attack.

One year after the Libyan's release on compassionate grounds, campaigners launched the new attempt to secure an inquiry, attracting 1,245 signatories in 10 days.

The appeal is being led by pressure group Justice For Megrahi, which involves Dr Jim Swire, whose daughter Flora was killed in the Pan Am bombing.

He said the case has been "corrosive and deeply damaging" to the Scottish justice system and called on the Government to open an inquiry.

Mr Swire added: "Only in such a manner can Scotland demonstrate that it is making a sincere attempt to resolve this highly contentious issue."

Professor Robert Black QC, who has been described as the "architect" of the Kamp van Zeist trial, also leant his name to the campaign. He has hit out on the "weak" quality of evidence which placed Megrahi in Malta, linking him to the bombing later over Scotland.

Prof Black said: "I have always contended that no reasonable tribunal could have convicted Megrahi on the evidence led."

The petition, lodged on October 8, can be accessed through the Scottish Parliament's website and closes on Thursday next week.

[RB: The petition remains live on the programme of the Scottish Parliament’s Justice Committee. Its progress over the years can be followed here.]

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