Blair played key role in Meghrahi case
Newly discovered documents in Tripoli have revealed the central role former UK premier Tony Blair played in releasing Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, the Lockerbie bomber.

Blair played key role in Meghrahi case

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The letters and emails found exposed the full extent of Blair’s intimate relations with fugitive Libyan dictator Muammar Gaddafi, The Sunday Telegraph reported.

The documents show Blair held secret talks with Gaddafi in the months before Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was freed from a British jail.

He was flown to Libya twice at Gaddafi’s expense on one of the former dictator’s private jets – visiting him in June 2008 and April 2009, when Libya was threatening to cut all business links if Megrahi stayed in a British jail, said the report.

The disclosure of the meetings – of which Blair makes no mention on his various websites – prompted calls by relatives of Lockerbie victims for Blair to make public all his dealings with Gaddafi and his regime, the report added.

In the correspondence, Blair’s private office refers to Gaddafi deferentially as “The Leader”.

Pam Dix, whose brother died in the bombing of Pan Am flight 103 over Lockerbie on Dec 21 1988, has said: “The idea of Gaddafi paying for Mr Blair’s visit is deeply offensive.

“These new meetings between Mr Blair and Gaddafi are disturbing, and details of what was discussed should now be made public. I am astonished Tony Blair continued to have meetings like this out of office”, Dix said.

Oliver Miles, a former British ambassador to Libya, said: “Mr Blair is clearly using his Downing Street contacts to further his business interests.”

The meetings took place at a time of intense negotiations with Gaddafi’s regime over the release of Megrahi, convicted of murdering 270 people in the single biggest terrorist atrocity committed in Britain.

The bomber, who has cancer, was finally released in August 2009 after doctors wrongly gave him just three months to live.

Blair has always denied involvement in Megrahi’s release – saying it was a decision taken by the Scottish Executive alone. A spokesman has admitted that Megrahi’s release was raised by Gaddafi.

The documents outline arrangements for the trips in 2008 and 2009. Blair also held a further private meeting with Gaddafi in June 2010 after Megrahi’s release.

Blair has refused to make public the full extent of his meetings in Libya since leaving office in June 2007.

The emails and letters – between Blair’s office, the British ambassador in Tripoli and the Libyan ambassador in London – raise concern over possible conflicts of interest regarding his varied roles as Middle East peace envoy, philanthropist and business consultant.

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