Iran ordered the destruction of Pan Am Flight 103 and paid a Palestinian terrorist more than $1 million to carry out the bombing, a West German magazine said Monday.
Munich-based Quick said the Boeing 747 was bombed to avenge the shooting down of an Iranian civilian jet by the U.S. Navy in the Persian Gulf.It said the Iranians paid Palestinian terrorist Ahmed Jibril $1.3 million to carry out the attack.
Pan Flight 103 blew up over Lockerbie, Scotland, on Dec. 21, killing all 259 people aboard and 11 on the ground. British investigators determined the plane was downed by a bomb hidden in radio-cassette recorder.
Flight 103 originated in Frankfurt, changed planes in London and was en route to New York when it exploded.
Quick said the decision to retaliate by attacking the plane was made in Tehran last summer, shortly after the Iran Air jetliner was downed by the USS Vincennes July 3. The Navy said it mistook the passenger plane for an Iranian fighter jet. Iran said all 290 people aboard died.
The magazine said the decision to bomb an American plane was made in a "narrow circle" of close advisers to Iran's spiritual leader, Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini.