Northern Ireland

IRA-Libya compensation inquiry asks Tony Blair for written evidence

Tony Blair
Image caption Westminster's Northern Ireland Affairs Committee has written to Tony Blair asking him to clarify his role in the lead up to a US compensation deal that precluded UK victims

Former Prime Minister Tony Blair has been asked to give evidence to a parliamentary inquiry into compensation for Libyan-sponsored IRA violence.

The late Libyan leader Colonel Muammar Gaddafi supplied arms to the IRA during the Troubles and Libyan Semtex was a key weapon in its bombing campaign.

Westminster's Northern Ireland Affairs Committee is examining government efforts to seek redress for UK victims.

It has asked Mr Blair to respond to concerns raised about his role.

The committee's chair, Laurence Robertson, has written to the former prime minister to ask about his involvement in negotiations that led to a compensation deal between the US and Libya eight years ago.

Libya compensated US victims of terrorism but UK victims were left out of the deal.

Mr Robertson's letter states: "There is a real sense amongst the victims that an opportunity to include them in the agreement reached between the US and Libya was missed in 2008."

He told Mr Blair the Northern Ireland Affairs Committee was offering him the "opportunity to submit written evidence to its inquiry to respond to the concerns raised and to clarify your role at the time".

"Based on this, the committee may decide to invite you to give oral evidence," the letter added.

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