Gaddafi death a lost chance for Lockerbie answers

Swire said Gaddafi was plugged into the terrorist networks of the world at the time of the bombing.

Updated: Oct 21, 2011, 00:13 AM IST

London: The father of a woman who died in
the 1988 Lockerbie bombing said on Thursday the death of Libyan
leader Muammar Gaddafi was a lost opportunity to find out the
truth about the attack.

Jim Swire, whose daughter Flora was one of 270 people
killed when a Pan Am jumbo jet exploded over the Scottish town
of Lockerbie in 1988, said he wished Gaddafi could have
appeared in front of the International Criminal Court.

"Gaddafi, whether he was involved or not, might have been
able to clear up a few points about that and now that he is
dead we may have lost an opportunity for getting nearer to the
truth," Swire told Sky News.

"Although we have not a scrap of evidence that Gaddafi
himself was involved in causing the Lockerbie atrocity, my
take on that was that he would have at least known who was."
Swire has repeatedly questioned the conviction in 2001 of
Libyan national Abdelbaset al-Megrahi over the bombing.

Megrahi was freed in 2009 as he was suffering from cancer
but is still alive. A second Libyan man, Al Amin Khalifa
Fhimah, tried alongside Megrahi by a Scottish court sitting in
The Netherlands, was acquitted.

"I would have loved to have seen Gaddafi appear in front
of the International Criminal Court both to answer charges
against his gross treatment of his own people and of citizens
murdered abroad by his thugs," Swire said.

"But I would also have loved to have heard about what
Gaddafi knew about the Lockerbie atrocity."

Swire said Gaddafi was "plugged into the terrorist
networks of the world" at the time of the bombing, adding that
he was "sure he would have known it was going to happen and I
feel sure he would have approved of it if he did know."

PTI