Victims' families urge Libyan be questioned over attack

1st April 2011, Comments 0 comments

Families of victims killed in the bombing of a French airliner in 1989 demanded Friday that Libya's deserting foreign minister Mussa Kussa be questioned by investigators about the attack.

"Now that the cards have been re-dealt, Mussa Kussa may have new revelations to make about the attack carried out by Libya on the DC10 of (former French airline) UTA that could implicate other people," they said in a statement.

Libya has always denied responsibility for the bombing, which killed all 170 people on board, the majority of them French, when the airline blew up over Niger in September 1989.

In 2004 however it agreed to pay 170 million dollars (120 million euros) of compensation to victims' families.

Kussa was previously questioned by a French judge investigating the bombing but the families said he could have more to say now that he has deserted the regime of Libya's long-term ruler Moamer Kadhafi.

They said he may be able to help locate Kadhafi's brother-in-law Abdallah Senussi, who was among six Libyans convicted in absentia by a French court in 2009 and sentence to life in prison for the bombing.

Kussa, a former head of Libyan intelligence, this week unexpectedly deserted ruler Moamer Kadhafi, embroiled in a war with rebels against his 42-year rule, and turned up in Britain where he is being questioned by officials.

He has been accused of masterminding another deadly airliner attack, the Lockerbie bombing which killed 270 people in 1988. Britain's foreign minister Hague said Kussa had not been offered immunity from prosecution.

© 2011 AFP

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