Bomber Release 'My Decision': Scot Justice Secretary

By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 24, 2009 1:30 PM CDT
Scottish Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill.   (AP Photo)
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(Newser) – Scottish Justice Minister Kenny MacAskill said today that the release of the Lockerbie bomber "was my decision and my decision alone," reports the Times of London, but that Libya violated an agreement in greeting Abdelbaset al-Megrahi with a hero's welcome. “It is a matter of great regret that Mr. al-Megrahi was received in such an inappropriate manner,” he told Scottish parliament. "It showed no compassion or sensitivity to the families of the 270 victims of Lockerbie."

MacAskill also reiterated his claim that the release of al-Megrahi on compassionate grounds was not a political move. “My decision was made following due process and according to the law of Scotland. I stand by the law and values of Scotland,” he said. “I live with the consequences.” Libyan officials say there was no “hero’s reception” for the Lockerbie bomber. “It is like when someone returns from the hajj,” one says.