(47)  Lockerbie trial: developments

On 15 December 1998, following a meeting some ten days earlier between Colonel Gaddafi and Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations, the Libyan People’s Congress (the highest legislative and policy-making body under the Libyan Constitution) at a session held in Sirte announced that it approved the proposal for a neutral country trial of the two Libyans accused of placing a bomb aboard PanAm Flight 103 which then exploded over Lockerbie on 21 December 1988. It adjured all three interested governments, namely Libya, the United Kingdom and the United States, to take the necessary steps to remove all remaining obstacles to the occurrence of the trial. The principal remaining obstacle to a trial is the issue of where, if convicted, the accused should serve any sentence of imprisonment. Britain and the United States insist that this should be in Scotland and not in either the Netherlands or Libya itself. (21 December 1998)