Libya, US sign bombing victimscompensation deal

Other News Materials 14 August 2008 23:57 (UTC +04:00)

(dpa) - Libya and the United States on Thursday signed a deal to compensate victims of attacks initiated by both sides during the 1980s, paving the way for the full normalization of relations.

The deal covers US victims of the bombing of a Pan Am flight over Lockerbie, Scotland in 1988 and of a Berlin disco in 1986. The United States will also compensate victims of US air raids on Libya and Benghazi in 1986. One of those victims was the adopted daughter of Libyan leader Moamer Gaddafi.

US Assistant Secretary of State David Welch and Libyan Deputy Foreign Minister Ahmad al-Fituri signed the deal in Tripoli that ended all ongoing or potential future legal action in court.

"The agreement we signed today will permit Libya and the United States to move ahead in developing their relations, which both Libya and the United States agree is an important national interest," Welch said.

Under the agreement, a fund will be set up to pay victims or their families.

US-Libyan relations were restored in early 2004 after more than two decades of frosty relations after Tripoli agreed to turn over its weapons of mass destruction programmes.

US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is expected to visit Libya before President George W Bush leaves office in January.