[JURIST] US Assistant Secretary of State David Welch [official profile] announced Friday that Libya has made its final deposit [briefing transcript] to a $1.5 billion fund for US terrorism victims. Under a US-Libya agreement [JURIST report] concluded in August, President George W. Bush subsequently issued an Executive Order [text] restoring the immunities of Libya and Libyan officials before US courts and dismissing cases that are before US courts. The settlement is seen as an important step to the normalization of US-Libyan relations. The Washington Post has more.
The fund will be used to settle claims for victims of the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 [BBC backgrounder; JURIST news archive] over Lockerbie, Scotland, and the 1986 bombing of the La Belle disco [BBC backgrounder] in Berlin, Germany. An additional $300 million will be provided to compensate Libyan victims of retaliatory US air strikes that followed the disco bombing, although the source of the funding is unclear as US officials have indicated that no US tax dollars will be used to pay for the settlement.