SCOTTISH politicians have a duty to find out the truth about the Lockerbie bombing, according to a member of Justice for Megrahi (JfM), the group that believes Abdelbaset al Megrahi, the only man convicted of the atrocity, was innocent.

Iain McKie’s comments came two days ahead of the 28th anniversary of the bombing of Pan Am Flight 103, in which 270 people died, and as JfM wrote to the new Lord Advocate James Wolffe QC, urging him to ensure the Crown Office gives “independent and objective consideration” to a Police Scotland report into the group’s criminal allegations.

McKie told The National the report – Operation Sandwood – which is more than a year late, was unlikely to be released until next year.

He said: “It won’t be this year and we’re looking at the early part of next year, which gives us breathing space to some extent to get the matter looked at properly.

“James Wolffe is a new man on the block and has no previous associations with Lockerbie. You’ve got to trust the man’s integrity until you find out otherwise, but there’s no doubt the previous incumbent Frank Mulholland was totally prejudiced and biased against the inquiry and made this publicly clear.

“Wolfe is not – he’s not been previously tainted with Lockerbie and therefore we’ve got to trust him. The issue is whether he can overcome the vested interests within the Crown Office that might want to brush this under the carpet.”

The basis of JfM’s case is the belief that the conviction of Megrahi in 2001 was a miscarriage of justice, and they have pressed for an independent inquiry into it.

In a statement, the group said: “Justice for Megrahi looks forward to the completion of the three-year Operation Sandwood enquiry into our nine criminal allegations against police, Crown Office officials and forensic scientists involved in the initial Lockerbie investigation and Camp Zeist trial, early in 2017.

“Although the Scottish Criminal Cases Review Commission report in 2007 found that the Megrahi conviction might have amounted to a miscarriage of justice, this is the first major reinvestigation of all the facts since that conviction. We continue to have confidence in the Police Scotland investigation team to carry out a thorough and objective enquiry.”

However JfM said they still had concerns.

“The previous support of the Justice Committee, in maintaining a watching brief over developments related to the ongoing police enquiry, has been of great value given that the Scottish Parliament has a constitutional duty to oversee the administration of justice in Scotland.

“This political scrutiny is critical and we are concerned that the current committee might decide to end that oversight as soon as the police report is submitted to Crown Office.

“It is essential that our political representatives continue scrutiny until Crown Office has considered the police report and has published its findings, in order to ensure that the Scottish public and the broader worldwide audience are fully aware of these findings.”

McKie added: “Just now we have Yemen, Aleppo, Saudi Arabia and all the Middle East conflicts that everyone’s exercised about, with children tragically being killed in the streets. This was a tragedy but it happened in 1988, and unfortunately the likes of Aleppo and these places in another 28 years will be put on the back burner.

“Lockerbie is a parallel with Aleppo – it was a serious crime and it seems to be that Scottish politicians cannot walk away from this – if they walk away from this they’ll be walking away from everything that’s happening today just because it’s inconvenient to find out the truth.”

A spokesperson for the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Services confirmed they had received JfM letter, and added: “We have no further comment to make at this time.”