The Crown Office is ready to release daily court transcripts to the
public at a charge of 100 Dutch gulden (30 UK pounds/50 USD). However
it might take a period of two days for transcripts to become available.
The release of court transcripts could clear the problem of media news
reports being contradictionary or inaccurate. Yesterday BBC had to remove
and change a news report saying MEBO boss Bollier recognized timer fragments
as being from his firm, while Reuters and AP broke news that Bollier
did not acknowledge 100 % that the fragments came from his timers. Today
BBC might re-change that story once more.
For getting a copy of the court transcripts, contact the Scottish
Courts media Center at Camp Zeist:
The Lockerbie Trial
Briefing Unit posted the following statement today on the front
page of its website:
- Mail: Postbus 1990, NL-3700 BZ Zeist - The Nederlands
- Phone: (+31) 346 334787or 346 334788
- Fax: (+31) 346 334795
Headline - May 21, 2000
Allegations against the Lockerbie Unit
Three Sunday newspapers carry stories about the Lockerbie Trial Briefing
Unit, alleging that Professor Andrew Fulton, the coordinator of the Unit,
was a member of MI6. The Sunday Herald says that the allegations "will seriously
undermine claims by the Lockerbie trial briefing unit that it has been been
giving independent and impartial advice." The Sunday Times Scotland and
Scotland on Sunday report that Fulton will be dismissed from the LTB Unit.
It has not been the practice of the LTB Unit to comment on press speculation.
Members of the Unit have been asked on many occasions to comment on the
quality of the evidence against Megrahi and Fhimah and have resolutely refused
to do so. Professor John Grant, the Director of the Unit, said this morning,
"I am disappointed that we have become the story when a major criminal trial
is trying to determine who is responsible for the deaths of 270 people.
The Unit has consistently offered impartial advice and assistance to those
with an interest in the trial. The news organisations throughout the world
who have spoken to members of our team can bear testimony to our impartiality.
I have no personal knowledge of any connection between Andrew Fulton and
the British intelligence service.
I cannot contact Andrew at the moment, but I shall be speaking to him
during the week from Camp Zeist, where I am covering the restart of the
trial on Tuesday. Our independence and impartiality are articles of faith
with us. Any prejudice to that independence and impartiality is, of course,
of great concern to us."
Author: Prof. John P. Grant
JNS Editor's Comment:-
Here are links to the Scottish Newspapers allegations:
Herald "Lockerbie press aide was top MI6 agent"
Times "Lockerbie law expert 'member of MI6'"
On Sunday "Lockerbie briefing team chief revealed as former
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Tehran IRNA in English 0856 GMT 7 Jun
[FBIS Transcribed Text] Vienna, June 7, IRNA -- an informed source here
Tuesday quoted Austrian police as dismissing claims made by an Iranian defector
identified as Ahmad Behbahani on his involvement in the murder of secretary
of the dissolved Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) of Iran, Abdurrahman Qssemlou
as "mere lies".
The source, talking to IRNA on condition of anonymity, said Ahmad Behbahani
together with his wife and nine-year-old son sought asylum in Austria in
1990. He then claimed membership in the terrorist Mujahedin Khalq Organization
(MKO), the source said, adding that assemlou was murdered in Vienna in 1989.
The source who has close contacts with Austrian security officials said
that the Austrian police was investigating Behbahani's claims and had examined
his fingerprints with those suspected of involvement in Qassemlou's murder.
The result of the investigations show that Behbahani had played no role
in the murder case, the source said.
He quoted an inspector as wondering that how would it be possible for
a person to commit a crime in Austria in 1989 and seek asylum in the country
The source further added that after a few months, Austrian officials turned
down Behbahani's demand for asylum because they found out the futility of
his claims on being under prosecution.
Behbahani had arrived in Vienna on board of an Iran Air flight and presented
no convincing evidence proving that he was under prosecution in Iran, said
He said that according to the documents available with the Austrian police,
Behbahani, his wife and son then left for New Zealand after facing Austria's
The source said that according to the file available at the Austrian police
department, Behbahani was born in 1955 and his wife in 1952, adding that
his fingerprints as well as his demand for asylum are registered in the
Behbahani in a recent interview with the U.S. television network CBS claimed
that he was a member of the Iranian Information Ministry and had murdered
Qassemlou in Vienna in 1989 upon an order from the Iranian officials.
In another development, Houshang Amir-Ahmadi, an Iranian residing in the
U.S., told the Voice of America (VOA) Tuesday that the CBS broadcast on
Behbahani was "a hasty and emotional program."
Amir-Ahmadi, speaking to the VOA as a lecturer in America, further added
that the broadcast was in contradiction with previous CBS programs which
were usually analytic and precise.
He said he had talked to several friends of Behbahani and had concluded
that no one knows him in Tehran and that he had definitely not been a senior
Information Ministry official. Even his ordinary status cannot be approved
or denied, Amir-Ahmadi said.
He said the fact that the Information Ministry has quickly denied the
case is another proof that he had not served at the ministry as a senior
official. Because, he added, the identity of lower rank personnel can be
easily denied whereas denial of senior officials' identity is a difficult
Moreover, Amir-Ahmadi noted, the said person was between 19 to 20 years
of age when the Lockerbie bombing took place and a key organization such
as the Information Ministry would neither leave the planning nor implementation
of such an important task to a young man.
He said apparently the U.S. administration has very quickly decided upon
the case, adding that it was the first time he noticed the administration
showed no enthusiasm in following the issue and the U.S. State Department
announced that the report will not change its Iran policy.
In Amir-Ahmadi's point of view, agents from the MKO, Israel and Turkey
as well as those who might be in Arab counties may have a hand in the case.
However, he said that not only the U.S. would not benefit from the case
but on the contrary lose because it is not willing to revive the Lockerbie
incident after 12 years as the West has tried for long years to attribute
it to Libya. Otherwise, he added, there would emerge an international problem
as they have imposed sanctions on Libya and inflicted billions of dollars
damage on the country.
Comment: "Expert" has become a dirty word.
According to the Oxford Dictionary, which calls itself "authoritative" but
we can consult it as it does not claim to be "expert": "Expert - Having
special knowledge or skill." Interesting. I always thought expert came from
experience. Perhaps originally it did. But as the English became masters
of twisting their own language, unlike the French who have a special committee
to keep it stable, we should not be surprised. Nevertheless, even if "Expert"
meant "God" or "Money" we would be well advised to stay clear, ignore, even
isolate or incarcerate anyone labelled an "expert" by themselves, the governments
or the media. This was our first thought when we heard yet another British
Expert say that this man is responsible for the "Lockerbie bomb". And we
were not wrong. Even Meddeling Halfbright
said "we should listen to this Iranian". Many many such experts and convenient
tourists-cum-terrorists will surface over the coming weeks and months as
the British-American-"Israeli" so-called Intelligence Services seek to avoid
being crushed by the collapse of their Mu'ammara Building. We would also
do well to snub those who label themselves "Intelligent"!
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