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“The senators should not be asking why Mr. al-Megrahi was released, but why he was convicted in the first place,” said Rev. John Mosey, whose daughter Helga, 19, died in the attack. “This is not about one man, but about the 270 people who died.”

Lawyers for al-Megrahi have long argued that the attack was actually the result of an Iranian-financed Palestinian plot, and that authorities in Britain and the United States tampered with evidence, disregarded witness statements and steered investigators toward the conclusion that Libya, not Iran, was to blame.

Libya accepted responsibility and paid compensation for the Lockerbie bombing, the argument goes, as a quick and easy way to shake off its pariah status.

Retired Detective Chief Superintendent Stuart Henderson, who helped link al-Megrahi to the bombing, recently told Scottish television that the idea that anyone would attempt to frame al-Megrahi was ridiculous.

Oliver Miles, a former British ambassador to Libya, said it was understandable that U.S. families still felt anger over al-Megrahi’s release.

“What is harder to explain is why, by and large, the British families have been ready to entertain the idea that al-Megrahi may not be guilty, while the American families, on the whole, have not,” he said.

Mr. Mosey and other families have called for a public inquiry into the case and urged U.S. senators to listen to their concerns.

“Instead of hounding the doctors and Scottish politicians in the case, I would like them to come over to speak to us, the U.K. families of Flight 103,” Mr. Mosey said.

Associated Press Writers David Stringer and Jill Lawless in London contributed to this report.