The 30th anniversary of the worst terrorist atrocity on British soil will be marked in solemn ceremonies in the UK and USA, as those who lost loved ones pledge to continue their long fight for justice.
Nicola Sturgeon described the Lockerbie bombing, in which 270 people from 21 nations died on December 21, 1988, as an “almost unimaginable tragedy”.
Speaking at Holyrood she said the atrocity brought out “incredible reserves of solidarity, compassion and love” and praised the bereaved families for their immense dignity and resilience”.
David Mundell, the Scottish Secretary, and James Wolffe, the Lord Advocate, will be among those laying wreaths in a simple remembrance serve at Dryfesdale Cemetery in Lockerbie on Friday.
Memorials will also be held at Syracuse University in New York State, at the FBI headquarters in Washington DC, and at Arlington National Cemetery in Virginia, where a cairn made from Lockerbie stone stands in memory of those who died.
Ms Sturgeon said enduring ties created following the bombing had left a “legacy of hope for the future”.
Lockerbie, where 11 people died on the ground, now sends two scholarship students every year to Syracuse, which lost 35 young people.
The First Minister added: “That is a powerful example of the way in which people have worked to remember the past, in a way which also builds hope for the future. That hope is also now part of the legacy of Lockerbie.”
Mr Mundell said the Scottish town “lost its anonymity” that night, adding: “It has not been easy, nor have we been able to achieve the closure we would have wanted, even after 30 years.
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