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IRA Semtex victim sees PM to get Gaddafi to say sorry—13 years on

PUBLISHED: 11:38 10 December 2008 | UPDATED: 13:52 05 October 2010

Jonathan injured in 1996 IRA blast and (inset) getting ready to meet PM today

Jonathan injured in 1996 IRA blast and (inset) getting ready to meet PM today

BOMB victim Jonathan Ganesh has finally met the Prime Minister today in his long campaign for justice after 13 years. The survivor of the 1996 Canary Wharf bombing in East London had a meeting with Gordon Brown this afternoon (Wed) to discuss his bid for compensation from the Libyans who were blamed for supplying Semtex to the IRA in the 1990s

Mike Brooke

BOMB victim Jonathan Ganesh has finally met the Prime Minister today in his long campaign for justice after 13 years.

The survivor of the 1996 Canary Wharf bombing in East London had a meeting with Gordon Brown at Westminster this afternoon (Wednesday) to discuss his bid for compensation from the Libyans who were blamed for supplying Semtex to the IRA in the 1990s.

“I asked him to intervene and get an apology from Gaddafi and money for those who need compensation,” Jonathan told the East London Advertiser tonight.

“Two of my friends were killed st Canary Wharf—they were blown to pieces. I was buried in the rubble, but survived.

“I told the Prime Minister I didn’t want compensation myself, but for the families of my two friends and all those injured at Canary Wharf.”

Jonathan was in a delegation of four who had an hour-long private meeting with the PM, representing victims of IRA atrocities including bombings in Northern Ireland. They are calling for pressure on the Libyans who were blamed for supplying the Semtex.

“I’m concerned about welcoming Gaddafi back among the nations without compensation or an apology,” Jonathan added.

“It would send wrong the message to terrorist groups around the world if that happened.

“The Libyans made a deal in August to pay millions of dollars to American victims of terrorism. Gordon Brown should get the same deal for Britain.”

The PM told the delegation that Libya didn’t want to discuss or even talk about the matter. The Government had tried, he assured, but Libya said matter was closed.

Despite the impasse, Mr Brown offered a glimmer of hope. He told Ganesh and his campaigners that “where there’s a will there’s a way.”

Ex-boxer Jonathan, now 36, has now pledged to step up his campaign, especially for the families on Millwall’s Bakantine estate who were caught up in the blast.

The two who died at Canary Wharf ran a news kiosk at South Quay, both friends of his.

Office cleaners living on the Barkantine estate caught up in the blast included Zaoui Berezag, now 67, who suffered severe brain damage and still needs round-the-clock care 13 years on. Two of Zaoui’s children and his next-door neighbour were also injured.


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