US attorney general William Barr yesterday announced the new indictment against a Libyan individual named Abu Agela Masud in the Lockerbie tragedy – on the day of the bombing’s 32nd anniversary. Unfortunately, this will not solve the Lockerbie case.

To many of us Libyans, the Lockerbie atrocity is as tragic as it is to relatives and families who lost loved ones when Pan Am Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie on December 21, 1988.

We share their agony and despair in search of the truth as we, like many of them, never believed the “official” British-American narrative of what happened. The late Abdelbaset al-Megrahi, to the majority of Libyans, is just another victim of the atrocity on top of the other 270 innocent people who perished on that night. Furthermore, I think the entire population of Libya, between 1998 and 1991, should be considered as victims. In that period, under pressure from the United Kingdom and the United States, the United Nations imposed crippling economic and travel embargoes that banned air travel in and out of Libya.

The crippling macroeconomic effects on the country aside, every Libyan who needed to travel abroad had to endure great difficulties. You had to drive to Tunisia or to Egypt, or take a boat to Malta, then you would catch your flight to your destination. Collective punishment first-hand.

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Our country paid $2.7 billion to settle the case. It accepted the Camp Zeist trial outcome, which convicted Abdelbaset al-Megrahi. The idea was that settling the Lockerbie case, in mutual agreement with the UK and USA, would help close the matter, paving the way for normalising relations with the West. The Libyan public opinion, then and now, believed Libya was not responsible for the tragedy. Yet the US and the UK chose not only to continue hiding the truth about what happened over Lockerbie, but engaged in war against Libya in 2011 under the pretext of protecting us – civilians – when in fact they pushed for regime change.

The result is yet another tragedy we are living in Libya. Once a safe and prosperous country, turned into a jungle where people are poor and security is difficult to come by.

Like many, when it comes to the Lockerbie tragedy, we want the truth and nothing more. But Mr Barr yesterday did not get anywhere near it.

Indicting more Libyans for a crime committed 32 years ago is not the path to the truth, nor is it even heading in its direction. Our government in Tripoli might hand over the new suspect to stand trial. But that does not mean we will get to the bottom of Lockerbie, nor will it make the US any more truthful about Lockerbie than it has been.

The bang Mr Barr has just made might help him create some fantasy of heroism for him to chew on in his retirement. However, he will be remembered by many as an untruthful attorney general.

Barr allowed himself to go public with the new indictment with total disregard for the fact that Scotland’s top five judges are in the middle of deciding whether or not there was miscarriage of justice in the first Lockerbie trial of 2001. This is not what one expects from the top legal man of a superpower America. Muammar Gaddafi might have been a villain, as many see him, and neither he nor Al-Megrahi are coming back. However, he was sincere and truthful about Lockerbie.

Today, we in Libya live in the worst imaginable chaotic country in the world. To say it is a police state is understatement. In a functioning police state, one can still complain if his house is broken into, for example, and get some results. Ours is far worse as we cannot even express our opinions openly without risking arrest or death.

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Our UN-recognised Government of National Accord in Tripoli is discredited and unable to protect itself without local militias and foreign powers. We know it is capable of committing the most disgusting acts like, for example, handing over its own people to other countries regardless of Libya’s national law prohibiting such a move.

Even if alleged bomb-maker Masud is handed over, it will not get us any closer than we are now to the real perpetrators of that heinous crime – a crime against humanity, really.

As a superpower, the US has a history of snatching people from their bedrooms from Afghanistan to Libya, and it would not surprise anyone if that happens again. To many Libyans, the US is not to be trusted when it comes to Lockerbie – which is neither about Gaddafi nor Al-Megrahi.

We Libyans carry the scars of Lockerbie within us, just like the relatives of the 270 innocent people who died in the tragedy. Lockerbie is about Libya, its people and the injustice done to them.

Mustafa Fetouri is a Libyan journalist