Documents passed to The Sunday Times reveal how the prime minister took a close interest in a campaign to secure payouts for the 2,500 families of those blown up by the Libyan-supplied Semtex explosive used by republican bombers.There is a mountain of evidence linking Libyan explosives to IRA bombings that killed and wounded British citizens, and Brown did all he could to thwart efforts to compel Libyan compensation to those terror victims. That compares poorly with US efforts that led to compensation of American victims of IRA terror attacks by Libya.
However, Brown refused to help the victims because of government concerns that putting pressure on Gadaffi might lead to Libya withdrawing co-operation over trade and the war against Islamic terrorism.
The documents will cause embarrassment for Brown as he faces new questions over the early release of the convicted Lockerbie bomber Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi.
In a further damaging twist, Jack Straw, the justice secretary, was last night accused by the Tories of misleading the public over the prime minister’s role in talks about the decision to free the terminally ill Libyan terrorist.
The Sunday Times has established that Straw wrote to Brown warning the Libyans might block a multi-million-pound BP oil deal unless the bomber was released. The disclosure contradicts remarks Straw made in a newspaper interview published yesterday in which he insisted there had been “no paper trail” to No 10.
Campaigners claim the official letters about IRA compensation highlight the government’s preoccupation with trading relations with Libya at the expense of bomb victims.
A letter from Bill Rammell, then the Middle East minister, sent on November 6, 2008 to Jonathan Ganesh, who was injured in the 1996 Docklands bomb and now campaigns for IRA victims, states that oil contracts were a factor in the government’s failure to act.
Sunday, September 06, 2009
Gordon Brown Has a Libya Problem
On top of revelations that the British government basically traded a convicted terrorist to fulfill their end of a bargain to have a major oil contract with Libya, we now learn that current British Prime Minister Gordon Brown vetoed Libyan reparations for victims of IRA terror attacks that utilized Libyan explosives.