London opposed US pressure against Libya

Government documents announced on Wednesday suggest that London was concerned about the economic decline of the new sanctions.

Despite its desire to obtain the extradition of two Libyans accused of the Lockerbie attack, the United Kingdom had opposed economic reasons to broaden Gaddafi’s UN sanctions against Libya, revealed government documents on Wednesday, 30 December Are over

The United Nations Security Council imposed a number of sanctions on Libya in 1992, which refused to extradite two Libyans as Libyan descent to the United Kingdom or the United States. In 1988, an American aircraft bombed over the Scottish city of Lockerbie. The attack killed all 259 passengers and crew, as well as eleven people on the ground, making it the deadliest attack ever on British soil.

But when United Nations President Bill Clinton called for the United Kingdom to support Britain in 1995 to expand these sanctions, then-British Prime Minister John Major wrote to him to refuse. A series of letters from 1995 and 1996, announced on Wednesday by the British National Archives, show that his government was concerned about the economic impact of the expansion of the sanctions.

“extremely opposing”

“The Foreign Minister has decided that we should not support the United States in his view”., Can we read in a letter from his secretary, who invites “extremely opposing” Of “Ministry of Commerce and Commerce”. “This would have a direct impact on UK exports to Libya, which probably exceeded £ 230m in 1995, of which around £ 100m belonged to the oil sector.”, He announced.

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At the time, the British government believed that further sanctions would not change the Libyan leader’s idea of ​​humiliating his citizens, which showed ineligible letters. “We want to try the two accused and convict them”In a letter to the secretary of John Major, an Foreign Ministry official was exposed, “But there is a small chance that Gaddafi will hand them over”.

In August 1996, Clinton signed an American law banning foreign companies, which invested heavily in Libya. In 1999, Gaddafi handed over two suspects and one of them, Abdelbasset Mohammed al-Meghi, was sentenced to life in prison in 2001, claiming his innocence until his death in 2012. His family has taken criminal appeal action to the Supreme Court of Scotland and is awaiting the decision of this posthumous appeal.

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