I.P.O. Information Service
Call for Lockerbie investigation renewed
the I.P.O. holds consultations with victims' families in London
London, 12 February 2004/P/RE/18544c-is
The President of the International Progress Organization, Professor Hans Koechler, yesterday held meetings in London on the possibility of an international investigation of the Lockerbie air disaster. He met, among others, with Dr. Jim Swire and Rev. John Mosey of the group UK Families Flight 103 that represents British families bereaved in the bombing of the Pan Am jet over Lockerbie (Scotland) in December 1988. He also met with MP Tam Dalyell, Father of the House of Commons.
The consultations took place a day after British Prime Minister Tony Blair had received the Libyan Foreign Minister in London.
Professor Koechler who was nominated by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan as international observer of the Lockerbie trial in the Netherlands expressed his full support to the Lockerbie families' efforts at finding out the truth behind the act of terrorism committed over Lockerbie.
The President of the I.P.O. reiterated his position that a full investigation into the background of the Lockerbie bombing must be initiated without further delay. He said that no one believes that a lone, mid-level Libyan intelligence officer was able to plan, finance and carry out this large-scale act of terrorism against a civilian airliner. The judgments of the Scottish trial and appeal courts in the Netherlands (2001 and 2002) were completely based on circumstantial evidence and created more the impression of a political "arrangement" than of impeccable judicial proceedings. The fact of the matter is that the instigators, financers and perpetrators of this crime are still at large.
Professor Koechler stated that the anti-terrorist policy of the United Kingdom is inconsistent and lacks credibility if the government refuses to fully investigate the Lockerbie crime. Particularly since September 11, 2001, no government can afford to put a blind eye on the actual functioning of terrorist networks such as the one that must have been behind the bombing of the Pan Am jumbo in 1988. No less than a full and accurate account of the sequence of events – including identification and punishment of all persons involved in the planning, financing and execution of the crime – will do justice to the victims' families and to the international public in general.
Prevention of terrorist acts against civilian airliners in the future will depend, to a considerable extent, on identifying and bringing to justice all the people, without exception, who have been involved in previous terrorist acts such as the one over Lockerbie.
Professor Koechler expressed the view that a public inquiry should be held under the auspices of the British Parliament (not the Government). Should the Parliament be unable to act, the setting up of an international commission of inquiry may be considered by the families of the Lockerbie victims in cooperation with international non-governmental organizations affiliated with the United Nations.
END/Call for Lockerbie investigation renewed/2004-02-05/P/RE/18544c-is