'When a parent loses a child there is never closure'
Man believed to be behind Lockerbie bombing dies; questions, sadness remains
Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the supposed criminal mastermind behind the 1988 Lockerbie
plane bombing has joined his former leader Colonel Moammar Khadafi in
death. Released from prison three years ago, al-Megrahi has succumbed to
illness. Some say that he was merely the "fall guy" for a much hated
dictators. Some relatives of the victims on the doomed plane flight say
they have little closure with the news of his death.
Many believed that Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the supposed criminal mastermind behind the 1988 Lockerbie plane bombing was merely the fall guy for a much-despised regime in Libya.
Speaking from her home in Greensburg, Pennsylvania, the 68-year-old Johnson said the death of Megrahi provided no closure to her grief -- but that it did mark the end of a chapter.
Awaking to the news that Megrahi had died. She said that "This is three years too late."
Her daughter Beth Ann was just 21 when she was killed returning to the U.S. from London, where she was studying.
"You find a way of coping, but to say closure indicates you are closing the door on what has happened, but it is never over. It is the closure of a chapter in the book - a long overdue chapter," Johnson says.
Johnson remains furious at the decision to release Megrahi from his jail in Scotland in 2009.
Frank Duggan, president of Victims of Pan Am Flight 103, said Megrahi should never be seen as a sympathetic figure. There are those in Scotland who believe that Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was merely the fall guy in the terrorist plot.
"He was an unrepentant murderer and now I hope he will finally see justice," Duggan said.
Not all the relatives of those who died on the flight feel the same way. David Ben-Ayreah, a spokesman for the victims of Lockerbie families, said Megrahi's death was something to be "deeply regretted.
"As someone who attended the trial I have never taken the view that Megrahi was guilty.
"Megrahi is the 271st victim of Lockerbie," he says.
Jim Swire, whose daughter Flora was killed in the bombing, said Megrahi's death was a "very sad event".
"I met him last time face-to-face in Tripoli in December last year, when he was very sick and in a lot of pain.
"But he still wanted to talk to me about how information that he and his defense team have accumulated could be passed to me after his death.
"And I think that's a fairly amazing thing for a man who knows he's dying to do.
"Right up to the end he was determined, for his family's sake - he knew it was too late for him, but for his family's sake - how the verdict against him should be overturned.
"And also he wanted that for the sake of those relatives who had come to the conclusion after studying the evidence that he wasn't guilty, and I think that's going to happen."
© 2012, Catholic Online. Distributed by NEWS CONSORTIUM.
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Pope Benedict XVI's Prayer Intentions for January 2013
General Intention: The Faith of Christians. That in this Year of Faith Christians may deepen their knowledge of the mystery of Christ and witness joyfully to the gift of faith in him.
Missionary Intention: Middle Eastern Christians. That the Christian communities of the Middle East, often discriminated against, may receive from the Holy Spirit the strength of fidelity and perseverance.
Keywords: Lockerbie bombing, Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, victims, relatives, closure
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