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Volume 554: debated on Tuesday 4 December 2012

3. What discussions his Department has had with the Libyan Government on reparations for previous victims of Libyan Semtex. (131102)

The Gaddafi regime left a terrible legacy, with many victims both in Libya and in the UK. My right hon. Friends the Prime Minister and the Foreign Secretary and I have consistently raised Gaddafi’s relationship with the IRA when we have seen the Libyan authorities.

It is now accepted that Libya provided the Semtex used both at Lockerbie and at the Warrington bombing in 1993. The US Government are vigorously pursuing a claim on behalf of the Lockerbie victims, whereas the UK is more passive in its support for the equivalent McCue case. Will the Minister review our position and undertake to go the extra mile for the UK victims, including those living in Warrington?

I know my hon. Friend’s position and his close relationship with those who suffered in Warrington, not least Colin Parry and his family. It has not been the UK’s position specifically to support individual compensation claims—that has been done privately—but the UK has offered facilitation and support to those making such claims. More important, the UK has also been able to support a process of reconciliation with the new Libyan authorities to make good the comment of President Magarief at the UN in September—he apologised for the crimes of the despot and is looking to try to ensure that things are repaired. We are working continually with the Libyan authorities on that. I am going there next week to help in that process.