Will Abdelbaset al-Megrahi die before Saif al-Islam takes the stand?
Human Rights Watch says Colonel Gaddafi’s son is being held in solitary confinement in Zintan, in the Nafusa Mountains of western Libya. He has no access to lawyers. Saif al-Islam has had the ends of his right-hand forefinger and thumb amputated – they became infected after being damaged in a Nato air strike.
Saif al-Islam faces two trials on corruption and war crimes charges at the International Criminal Court.
Meanwhile, the Daily Record reports on the life of the biggest mass murderer in British history:
The Lockerbie bomber is no longer taking treatment for prostate cancer amid reports he has “given up” his fight against the disease. Abdelbaset al-Megrahi is said to be on high doses of morphine to dull the pain of his illness.
In August 2009, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was given three months to live. He was released from Greenock prison on compassionate grounds. Compassion for the man convicted of killing 270 people.
Tory justice spokesman David McLetchie wants a few facts:
“If any information is to be released then it should be all the medical evidence as to why the SNP Government set Megrahi free, something it has consistently refused to do. The early release of the worst mass murderer in British history is exceptional, so why won’t theScottish Government release the medical records which were the basis of the ‘three months to live’ justification? With every day that passes, the Government look more and more foolish and, until all the evidence is published, that will not change.”
Does anyone believe the Scots acted without pressure from Tony Blair’s Westminster regime to free Abdelbaset al-Megrahi? Of course, we deal in fact not in belief. The facts are that Abdelbaset al-Megrahi is the only person convicted of the December 1988 bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie, which left 270 dead; and that he had three months to live over two years ago.
One other fact is that Blair and his associates have done pretty well off oil deal in Gaddafi’s Libya, before their negotiating partner was murdered.
David McLetchie MSP adds:
“If Kenny MacAskill wants to prove that releasing Britain’s worst mass murderer was the right call then he must make available all the medical evidence on which his decision was based.”
Kenny MacASkill is the Justice Secretary who singed al-Megrahi’s release papers. Al-Megrahi remains a Scottish prisoner released on licence and is obliged to stay in regular contact with East Renfrewshire Council.
Add to this a report in the Glasgow Evening Times:
A SECRET 800-page document detailing why the Libyan convicted of the Lockerbie bombing could have suffered a miscarriage may soon be published.
Al-Megrahi denies being a killer:
The headline in the Times quotes him:
“These are my last words: I am innocent”
Speaking from his sick bed in Tripoli, Abdul Baset Ali al-Megrahi, who has prostate cancer, insisted that he was not involved in the attack on Pan Am 103 in December 1988 that killed 270 people. He also accused a key witness, whose evidence helped to convict him, of lying in court…Sentenced to life, al-Megrahi’s conviction was upheld on appeal and he served eight years in a Scottish prison. Most US relatives, convinced of his guilt, were outraged when the Scottish government agreed in August 2009 to release him on compassionate grounds after he was diagnosed with terminal cancer. Al-Megrahi flew to Libya and a hero’s welcome
A friend, George Thomson, who conducted the interview on Saturday, described him as ravaged by the cancer and very weak. “For any doubters who may think he is not ill, you only have to look at the man and how wasted he is to see he has not got long in this life,” said Mr Thomson on his return.
However, al-Megrahi still had enough strength to deliver a personal challenge to the Maltese shopkeeper, Tony Gauci, whose identification was instrumental in securing his conviction. Clothes from Mr Gauci’s shop were found, along with a tiny fragment of the timing device that triggered the bomb, in a briefcase among the wreckage of the plane.
Asked by Mr Thomson, a former police officer who was part of his defence team, what he would say to Mr Gauci if he met him again, al-Megrahi said: “If I had the chance to see him, I would tell him that I never ever in my entire life bought clothes from his shop, I never bought clothes from him. He dealt with me very wrongly, I have never seen him in my life before he came to the court. I am facing my death and I swear by my God, which is my God and Gauci’s God, I swear with him I have never been in that shop or buy any clothing from Gauci. He has to believe this because we are all together when we die.”
The commission met with Gauci. At the end of the statement they said he was nervous. He told them that when the man who bought the clothes left the shop, his brother Paul came to the shop, and took the parcels from the man and took them to the taxi he was taking. This information has never been raised before. There is an opportunity to have another physical witness who could have identified the man, yet they kept the brother out of it.”
Al-Megrahi ended the interview by saying he had a message for the international community, especially the people of Scotland and the UK: “I am about to die and I’d ask now to be left in peace to die with my family, and they be left in peace by the media as well. I will not be giving any more interviews, and no more cameras will be allowed into my home … I am an innocent man, and the book will clear my name.”
If not al-Megrahi, who? The NY Daily News tosses up names:
Last week, FBI Director Robert Mueller and U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder met with Scotland’s Lord Advocate, Frank Mulholland, to start a new investigation into who, exactly, brought down the jetliner.
Part of the reason a new probe could bear fruit is that the fall of Moammar Khadafy’s regime has suddenly made former Libyan government functionaries more willing to speak honestly about his policy of state-sponsored terrorism — perhaps for no other reason than to settle old scores.
That’s all well and good, as long as they tell the truth about Lockerbie.
Among the potential witnesses are former Justice Minister Mustafa Abdul-Jalil and former Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa, who may finally be eager to talk about what role their government played in the attack — and who else was involved.
One obvious candidate is Lamin Khalifa Fhimah, who stood trial with Megrahi but was acquitted. Also suspected are Khafady’s brother-in-law Abdullah Senussi, who then led Libya’s intelligence services, and Ibrahim Nayili, former head of airline security.
Names and lies and money. Who now speaks for the 270?