World News

White House: Lockerbie bomber welcome "disturbing"

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The White House said on Friday it was “disturbing” that Abdel Basset al-Megrahi, a former Libyan agent jailed for life for the 1988 Lockerbie bombing, got a hero’s welcome on his return to Libya.

“It is disturbing to see images suggesting that Megrahi was accorded a hero’s welcome instead of being treated as a convicted murderer,” White House spokesman Bill Burton said.

“As we have communicated to the Libyan government, such a welcome sends the wrong message, and is deeply offensive to the families of the hundreds of people who lost their lives in the Lockerbie bombing.”

Megrahi was released on the order of Scotland’s justice minister because he is ill and believed to have less than three months to live.

Reporting by Jeff Mason, editing by Vicki Allen