Diplomatic cables revealed by WikiLeaks suggest that the British government feared Libya would take "harsh and immediate" action against it if the Lockerbie bomber died in prison.
In a 2009 cable, a U.S. official apparently wrote that British officials said Libyan officials had threatened to diminish political ties if Abdelbaset al-Megrahi was not freed from a Scottish prison.
The U.S. official reportedly described Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi as having made "thuggish" threats to cut off trade ties and harass embassy staff, according to a report in "The Guardian" newspaper, which is cooperating with WikiLeaks in the so-called Cablegate classified-document dump.
Al-Megrahi was the only person convicted of the 1988 attack of a U.S. plane over Lockerbie, Scotland, which killed all 259 people aboard.
He received a hero's welcome upon his return to Libya.compiled from agency reports