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Lockerbie bomber's release imminent

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Lockerbie bomber's release imminent

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Speculation is rife that the man convicted of the Lockerbie bombing is on the verge of being freed.

Abdelbasset al Megrahi remains the only person jailed for the terrorist attack which brought down Pan Am flight 103 over the Scottish town in December 1988. Al Megrahi has terminal prostate cancer and could be released on compassionate grounds. Victims families who remain concerned about his conviction, would welcome his release. “I should be very delighted if he does go home to his family to die. I think it’s inhumane to keep him in prison when we know he has secondary cancer from his prostate. So I’d be very pleased about that,’‘ said Dr Jim Swire. ‘‘Compassionate release does not entail stopping the appeal that is currently running into the question of the validity of the verdict against this man. And it’s very important to us, as seekers of the truth that that appeal continues,” Swire added. Libya accepted responsibility for the bombing and agreed to pay compensation to the victims families — a move that helped further restore its ties with the West. Nevertheless, its leader Colonel Gaddafi has repeatedly called for the Libyans release. The Scottish government has yet to make a decision over al Megrahi who was sentenced to life for the bombing. However, that is now thought to be imminent. For many, al Megrahi’s release would be seen as another milestone in Libya’s journey from pariah state to a country restored to the international fold. 270 people died when the New York bound airliner blew up over Lockerbie. The bomb killed all 259 people on board, including 189 Americans, and 11 people on the ground.