Gaddafi Ordered Lockerbie Bombing: Pan Am Flight 103
Mustafa Abdel Jalil: 'Gadhafi Ordered Lockerbie Bombing"
Libya's former Justice Minister, Mustafa Abdel Jalil, who has quit the Libyan government and joined the opposition, says that Muammar Gaddafi personally ordered the Lockerbie bombing, in which Pan Am Flight 103 was blown up in the air, killing 270 people on the the plane and on the ground below. (Pan Am Flight 103 Victims List)
Jalil said that Abdelbaser Ali Mohamed Al-Megrahi was personally ordered to carry out the bombing, and that Gaddafi wanted Al-Megrahi released from prison not for humanitarian reasons, but to be sure that Al-Megrahi would not divulge Gaddafi's involvement.
While Libya accepted responsibility for the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, Gaddafi has never personally admitted any involvement.
Al-Megrahi was released from a Scottish prison on compassionate grounds in 2010 due to prostate cancer, and is still alive. His release drew anger from the US government, as 189 Americans were killed in the Lockerbie bombing.
It has been a widely-held belief that Gaddafi was behind the bombing, but the testimony of someone so close to the Libyan dictator seals the deal. One reason for divulging Gaddafi's direct involvement in the Lockerbie bombing would be to galvanize Western opposition to Gaddafi's weakening rule.
"I have information that is one hundred percent sure that Gaddafi is behind the tragedy at Lockerbie," Jalil told the Swedish daily Expressen (link in Swedish). "It is nothing that I think -- it is something that I know and am 100 percent sure about."
The Scottish Government released al-Megrahi in 2009 on compassionate grounds after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer and was given months to live but is still alive in Libya. Mr Abdel-Jalil did not deny al-Megrahi's guilt but said Colonel Gaddafi had asked him to carry out the attack. "To hide it, he [Gaddafi] did everything in his power to get al-Megrahi back from Scotland," Mr Abdel-Jalil added.