Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Justice for Megrahi e-petition

Eric Falconer got in touch yesterday to ask me to give a mention to this e-petition to the Scottish Parliament from the 'Justice for Megrahi' campaign :

"Calling on the Scottish Parliament to urge the Scottish Government to open an independent inquiry into the 2001 Kamp van Zeist conviction of Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi for the bombing of Pan Am flight 103 in December 1988."

This is, of course, something of an awkward point for us supporters of the SNP, because the Scottish government have categorically ruled out holding such an inquiry on their own initiative, on the grounds that it would lack the powers to compel key witnesses (notably from the US) to give evidence. I must say I think that's a valid concern - a homegrown probe could easily turn into (almost) as much of a joke as the recent hearing chaired by Senator Menendez. But the bottom line is that, however it is constituted, there is a desperate need for a wide-ranging inquiry of some sort - it's nothing short of scandalous that the fatal flaws in Megrahi's conviction identified by the SCCRC have simply been swept under the carpet. It's an ongoing injustice not only to Megrahi himself, but also to the families of the victims, including those who are totally convinced of Megrahi's guilt. Comfort drawn from a false belief in a man's guilt does not equal justice.

So while I might quibble about the precise wording of the petition, if it helps refocus attention on what really matters, it probably has quite a bit of merit. If you'd like to put your name to it, or just to have a peek, it can be found here.


  1. Cheers James. I pretty much agree with your comments, though, as an SNP member I don't feel at all awkward supporting a call for an independent inquiry. The key issue in the Megrahi case is and always has been his conviction and not his release, and the presentation of this petition, hopefully with many signatures, will drive the discussion in that direction.

  2. The thing is, there has never been an inquiry into the original Lockerbie bombing. Thatcher kept on puting it off, and Major claimed that no inquiry could take place until a trial took place. Blair & Brown just ignored calls, while Cameron seems to think that the case has been closed. Thats 5 PM's who have stonewalled on an inquiry. What are they hiding?

  3. i think the only way for such an inquiry to be as wide ranging as it can possibly be is for there to be another scottish court elsewhere