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Commentary :: Human Rights
Release of Lockerbie convict according to humanitarian values
25 Aug 2009
With the release on humanitarian grounds, of the Lockerbie convict, Mr Megrahi, the Scottish goverment has acted according to the universal humanitarian values and fundamental principles of civilisation
The objections of certain American political circles not only testify of lack of respect for humanitarian values, but are also highly hypocritical and based on double standards.
Dear Editor and Readers,

Undoubtedly you have learnt of the release on humanitarian grounds, of the Lockerbie convict, Mr Megrahi, by the Scottish government, which has been followed by great indignation, especially from American political circles [1]
Not only I applaud the decision of the Scottish government, which is based on universal humaitarian priciples, also I regard the American attitude as utter hypocritical and based on double standards.

With regard to this, I have written underlying comment

Kind greetings

Astrid Essed
Amsterdam
The Netherlands

[1]

''Obama calls Lockerbie bomber release ''a mistake''

Reuters, 20-8 2009


http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSTRE57J4IL20090820

''FBI chief condemns Lockerbie bomber's release''

Los Angeles Times, 23-8-2009


http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-us-lockerbie23-2009a


RELEASE OF LOCKERBIE CONVICT/ ACCORDING TO HUMANITARIAN VALUES AND PRINCIPLES OF CIVILISATION

''The civilisation of a country is being measured according the way it treats its adversaries''

Anoymous

''No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. ''

Article 5, Universal Declaration of Human Rights


Dear Editor and Readers,

I have learnt with great appreciation of the decision of the Scottish government to release the Libyan convict of the Lockerbie bombing in 1988, Mr al Megrahi, on humanitarian grounds, due to the fact, that he has terminal prostate cancer

A

RELEASE OF SERIOUSLY ILL PRISONERS
MATTER OF HUMANITY AND CIVILISATION

Yet apart from the fact, that his guilt has been disputed [1], releasement on humanitarian grounds, when there is serious illness involved, not only is a fundamental and universal principle of civilisation, but also in accordance with the right of any human being on dignity and a humanitarian treatment, as been stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the international Treaties

This inherent right on dignity and humanity implies according to my opinion the right of a prisoner, who is seriously ill or dying, to end his life in his own environment or country, so that he or she can say goodbye to his family and friends, in dignity

I appreciate highly this real humane and christian decision of the Scottish government

In that same spirit of humanity, the Dutch Queen Beatrix has recently pardoned a terminally ill prisoner [2]

B

DOUBLE STANDARDS AND LACK OF HUMANITY AND CIVILISATION
THE OBJECTIONS OF THE USA


With regard to this, the objections of the American political circles against the releasement of Mr al Megrahi [3], are not only testifying an inherent lack of humanity and civilisation, but also reflect utter hypocrisy and the maintanance of double standards, regarding their own serious violations of the International Humanitarian Law, with regard to Libya

In remembrance:
American bombings on Libyan cities in 1986

On april 15 1986, two years before the Lockerbie bombing, the USA bombed two Libyan cities, Benghasi and the capital Tripoli, by which more than 300 civilians were killed [4]

It is a known fact, that according to International Humanitarian Law on armed conflicts, any military attack on a civilian goal is strictly forbidden [5]
Evidently, the bombings on Libya were grave warcrimes

However, despite the condemnation of the bombings by the UN General Assembly, in UN GA Resolution 41/38 [6], there was never any prosecution or trial, not only because the bombings were an action of the American State [President Reagan then was on power], but especially because of the international powerrelations, which made it impossible to bring a Superpower as the USA before any International Tribunal.

EPILOGUE:

It is evident, that the Lockerbie bombing, by which 270 people were killed, was a grave crime.
Of course I agree, that those crimes have to be punished gravely, of course after a fair and independent trial, with hard and convincing evidence

But apart from that, according fundamental human rights rules and universal principles of civilisation, any prisoner, who is seriously ill or dying, should be released on humanitarian grounds
Whether it concerns a non-political crime, a terror convict or an American soldier, who has been convicted for war-crimes in Iraq, Afghanistan or any country [7]

Human Rights, in casu the inherent right on dignity and humanity, must be maintained under all circumstances, regardless the person or committed crime

Kind greetings

Astrid Essed
Amsterdam
The Netherlands



[1]

Regarding the disputed guilt in the case of Mr Megrahi

a

''Lockerbie judges to hear new evidence''
BBC World 14-2-2002

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/1809065.stm

''New evidence permitted in Lockerbie bombing appeal''
ABC Newsonline 8-2-2002

http://www.abc.net.au/news/newsitems/200202/s477245.htm

b

''Lockerbie ruling Revisited'', by Mr W Blum, dd 2-7-2007
Mr Blum is also author of '' A Guide to the World's Only Superpower and Killing Hope: US Military and CIA Interventions Since World War II.


http://www.atlanticfreepress.com/news/1/1916-lockerbie-ruling-revisited.

c

'' Lockerbie revisited''
Dutch documentary film [also seen in English] by the Israeli journalist Mr Gideon Levy


In this documentary, in which Levy is interviewing important American and Scottish Authorities, among else American Intelligence Officers, the Scottish jouralist of investigation Mr I Ferguson, he is questioning the reliable character of the evidence against Mr al Megrahi, stating that there was some manipulation of evidence

According to Levy it is more probable, that Iran was behind the Lockerbie bombings, out of retaliation for the American shooting of an Iranian passenger airplane dd july 1988, by which 290 civilians have died

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iran_Air_Flight_655

d

See also a Libyan source of the Lockerbie case


http://www.mebocom-defilee.ch/inhalt.html#512


[2]


The man, aged 50, committed a double murder in 1992, in the German city Frankfurt and was sentenced by a German Court to lifelong imprisonment
The sentence was handed over by the Netherlads, so that he could spent his imprisonment in a Dutch prison


See

http://www.rnw.nl/english/article/prison-pardon-terminal-patient


[3]

a

''Obama calls Lockerbie bomber release ''a mistake''

Reuters, 20-8 2009


http://www.reuters.com/article/newsOne/idUSTRE57J4IL20090820



''Obama condemns release of Lockerbie bomber''

New Statesman, 21-8-2009


http://www.newstatesman.com/2009/08/scottish-government-release


''Lockerbie bomber'' His release is a mistake, says President Obama

Telegraph 20-8-2009


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/terrorism-in-the-uk/6062963/Locke

b


''FBI chief describes Lockerbie bomber's release as a ''mockery of Justice''

Telegraph 22-8-2009


http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/usa/6073464/FBI-c


''FBI chief condemns Lockerbie bomber's release''

Los Angeles Times, 23-8-2009


http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/world/la-fg-us-lockerbie23-2009a


[4]

American bombings on Libya
Wikipedia:

See

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Libya

BBC News
15 1986 US launches airstrikes on Libya

http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/april/15/newsid_3975000




Article Mr A Veldhof [Dutch Labour politician]
''American and other terrorists''
From September 11th, 1973 to September 11th 2001
Translation of ''Terrorists versus terrorists'', Parool [Dutch newspaper, addition Astrid Essed], 15th march 2003


http://www.tni.org/detail_page.phtml?page=pin-docs_150303


[5]

Parties to a conflict shall at all times distinguish between the civilian population and combatants in order to
spare civilian population and property. Neither the civilian population as such nor civilian persons shall be the
object of attack. Attacks shall be directed solely against military objectives.

Article 7, Basic rules of International Humanitarian Law in armed conflicts

http://www.icrc.org/web/eng/siteeng0.nsf/htmlall/668BF8



[6]

Condemnation of the American bombings of Libya by the UN General Assembly
79 coutries voted in favor, 28 voted against en there were 33 abstentions

See

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bombing_of_Libya

See also regarding the UN General Assembly condemnation of the American 1986 attacks on Libya
UN GA Resolution 41/38, 1986

See:

http://www.ulb.ac.be/droit/cdi/Site/Etats-Unis%20Lybie%201986.html

An attempt to get a condemnation of the UN Security Council regarding the American bombings on Libya failed, due to the veto's of the USA, Great Britain and France

See

''
Conseil de sécurité

A la suite du veto des Etats-Unis, de la France et du Royaume-Uni, un projet de résolution du Conseil de sécurité visant à condamner l’action de l’US Air Forceest rejetée,''

Source


http://www.ulb.ac.be/droit/cdi/Site/Etats-Unis%20Lybie%201986.html


[7]

''US Soldier sentenced to life in Iraq murder case''

Welt online 22-5-2009

http://www.welt.de/english-news/article3783478/U-S-soldier-sentenced-to-


''Ex soldier gets life sentence for Iraq murders''

New York Times 21-5-2009

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/05/22/us/22soldier.html

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