Lockerbie Trial: Timetable

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The Independent Online
1988

21 December Bomb explodes on London to New York Pan Am 103 at 31,000ft. All 259 aboard and 11 on ground killed as wreckage crashes on Lockerbie in Scotland

28 December US government offers pounds 250,000 to catch killers

1989

31 January US government identifies 100 flaws in airport security

1 April Lockerbie victims' committee called UK Families Flight 103 set up

1990

10 May Pan Am reaches out-of-court settlement with Scottish relatives

1 October A 55-day Fatal Accident Inquiry opens in Dumfries

1991

16 October US Supreme Court rejects relatives' appeal for punitive damages against Pan Am

14 November Charges announced against Abdel Basset Ali al-Megrahi and al-Amin Khalifa Fhimah

15 November Libya calls for international inquiry, offering to send dispute to neutral authority

1992

22 January UN Security Council Resolution 731 urges Colonel Gaddafi to comply with extradition of suspects

31 March Security Council Resolution 748 tells Libya to surrender them by 15 April or face world ban on air travel and arms sales, plus diplomatic restrictions

15 April UN embargo takes effect

1993

8 April Security Council decides to retain sanctions

13 August US, France and Britain threaten to inflict far tougher embargo measures

1 October UN deadline expires for Libya to surrender suspects

2 October Britain, France and US stiffen sanctions

21 December Fifth anniversary of bombing is marked with ceremony in Washington, services in Westminster Abbey and in Lockerbie churches

1994

17 February Britain rejects Libyan offer of trial in Muslim court anywhere

1995

23 March FBI offers pounds 2.7m for information aiding arrest of suspects

November Families secure out-of-court settlements from Pan Am insurers

1996

April Suspects willing to be tried under Scottish law in neutral location, says their Libyan lawyer

1997

July German police probe claims by former Iranian spy that late Ayatollah Khomeini ordered bombing in revenge for downing of Iran Air plane

10 July UN sanctions crumbling, many countries said to be allowing flights to Libya

October Victim's father Jim Swire meets the South African President, Nelson Mandela

25 October Mr Mandela urges compromise at Commonwealth conference in Edinburgh, asking Britain and US to accept trial in neutral state

28 October Tony Blair says men should stand trial in Scotland

1998

20 April Jim Swire (right) travels to Libya with a law expert, Professor Black, to broker terms of trial

24 August Britain and US say trial can be held in neutral country. Colonel Gaddafi agrees in principle

1999

19 March Mr Mandela persuades Colonel Gaddafi to handover by 6 April

5 April Suspects handed over in Tripoli and arrive in the Netherlands

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