Open Thread: Should Libya Extradite Lockerbie Bomber to U.S.?
Fred Lucas of NewsBusters sister site CNSNews.com is reporting today that Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney wants to see convicted Lockerbie bomber Abdel Baset al-Megrahi extradited from Libya to the United States to face prosecution:
“What I’d like to do is have the Lockerbie bomber extradited from Libya,” Romney said at a campaign stop in Exeter, N.H., in response to a question on the matter. “This is a person responsible for killing Americans. The idea that he would be welcomed home as a hero in Libya is simply distasteful and disgusting and outrageous and I’d like him to be extradited and face justice at the hands of the United States.”
The Scottish government released Lockerbie bomber Abdel Baset al-Megrahi from his life sentence in the summer of 2009. He was convicted on 270 counts of murder, conspiracy to murder, and violating British-aviation legislation after PanAm flight 103 was destroyed at 31,000 feet, 38 minutes after departing Heathrow Airport in London bound for New York City.
Megrahi is reportedly in a coma and "close to death" but we've heard that before.
What say you? Should Obama administration officials lean heavily on rebel representatives to authorize a transfer of Megrahi to U.S. custody?
UPDATE: The New York Times is reporting that Libyan rebel leaders have ruled out extraditing Megrahi. Is this a troubling sign, regardless of whether the Obama administration had any plans on seeking extradition, given that effectively it proves Libya's rebels are perfectly content with harboring a convicted terrorist.