Lockerbie: 25th anniversary to be remembered

Memorial events will be held at home and abroad to mark the 25th anniversary of the Lockerbie bombing.

Relatives lay flowers at the memorial stone of Patricia Ann Klein. Picture: Robert Perry
Relatives lay flowers at the memorial stone of Patricia Ann Klein. Picture: Robert Perry

Senior politicians, officials, families and communities will come together today to remember the 270 people killed in the terrorist atrocity.

Services will take place in Lockerbie and London, while the UK government is sending Scotland Office minister David Mundell to a memorial ceremony in the United States, where most of the victims were from.

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Speaking last night, law officers for Scotland said their thoughts and prayers are with the victims’ families and all those whose lives were touched by the tragic events.

Speaking on behalf of the Scottish prosecution service, Lord Advocate Frank Mulholland and Solicitor General Lesley Thomson said: “[Today] is a time to remember those who lost their lives on 21 December 1988 and the impact it had on so many lives then and since that tragic night.

“On behalf of the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service, our message is simple: Always remembered, never forgotten; forever in our hearts.”

The Lord Advocate will join Mr Mundell at the memorial service at Arlington National Cemetery, Washington DC.

A cairn of red sandstone, one brick for every life lost, stands at the cemetery in Virginia. The blocks came from Corsehill Quarry in Annan, Dumfriesshire.

Ms Thomson will attend the wreath-laying and memorial service at Dryfesdale Cemetery in Lockerbie, as will Scotland’s First Minister Alex Salmond and Lord Wallace, Advocate General for Scotland. Justice secretary Kenny MacAskill will attend the evening service at Dryfesdale church.

Mr Salmond said: “On this 25-year anniversary, and as the country prepares once more to relive the harrowing events of that terrible night, it is important that we remember that the pain and suffering of the families and friends of those who died has endured since that winter night in 1988.”

A service will be held at Westminster Abbey at the same time as commemorations in the US, attended by Scottish Secretary Alistair Carmichael and Scotland’s Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon.

The Moderator of the General Assembly of the Church of Scotland, the Right Reverend Lorna Hood, will take part in the service at Westminster Abbey.

She said: “It is difficult to believe that 25 years have passed since that awful night when so many innocent lives were lost and a town in Scotland would be forever associated with one of the worst terrorist attacks in recent history.”