Pressure on MacAskill as book ‘tells Megrahi’s story’

Rev John Mosey, Dr Jim Swire, John Ashton and Iain McKie
Rev John Mosey, Dr Jim Swire, John Ashton and Iain McKie
Have your say

Justice Secretary Kenny MacAskill was today under pressure to make a statement in the Scottish Parliament after it was claimed he sent a message to the Lockerbie bomber that he should drop his appeal to smooth the way for his compassionate release.

The allegations – strongly denied by the Scottish Government – are contained in a new book, Megrahi: You Are My Jury, by researcher and TV producer John Ashton, in which Abdelbaset al-Megrahi claims he was “the innocent victim of dirty politics, a flawed investigation and judicial folly”.

A Scottish Government spokesman branded the book “third-hand hearsay”.

He said: “We can say categorically that neither the Scottish Government had any involvement of any kind in Mr Al-Megrahi dropping his appeal, or indeed any interest in it.

“That was entirely a matter for Mr Al-Megrahi and his legal team.”

But Labour, the Conservatives and the Liberal Democrats all said Mr MacAskill should make a statement to parliament in the wake of the book’s allegations.