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British politicians smell blood over Lockerbie bomber

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British Prime Minister Gordon Brown's office today denied that his government agreed to make the convicted Lockerbie bomber eligible for release in exchange for an oil contract with Libya, as reported yesterday by the center-right British newspaper, The Times.

"The central assertion in this story is completely untrue and deeply misleading," Mr. Brown's office said in response to the story.

British justice secretary Jack Straw – who admitted yesterday that Brown's government backed down from its insistence that Abdelbaset Ali Mohmed al-Megrahi be excluded from any prisoner trade agreement hashed out during the now-famous 2007 'deal in the desert' between Libya and Britain – has called the issue "academic."

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