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Timeline of British-Libyan ties

Britain is to recognise the rebel National Transitional Council as Libya's sole legitimate government and will expel remaining Libyan diplomats from the country, foreign secretary William Hague said today.

world Updated: Jul 27, 2011 16:57 IST

Britain is to recognise the rebel National Transitional Council as Libya's sole legitimate government and will expel remaining Libyan diplomats from the country, foreign secretary William Hague said on Wednesday.

Here is a timeline of British-Libyan relations in the last 25 years:
April 1984 - Shots fired from Libyan embassy in London kill a policewoman guarding demonstrators protesting against Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi. Britain cuts diplomatic ties.

December 21, 1988 - Pan Am Flight 103 from London to New York is blown up over Lockerbie, Scotland, killing 270 people.

November 1991 - The United States and Britain accuse Libyans Abdel Basset Ali Mohamed al-Megrahi and Al-Amin Khalifa Fahima of Lockerbie bombing. Libya denies involvement.

March 1992 - Security Council Resolution 748 tells Libya to surrender suspects by April 15 or face worldwide ban on air travel and arms sales and restrictions on diplomatic presence.

December 1995 - Britain orders the expulsion of Libya's senior diplomat in London; in retaliation, Libya orders a senior British diplomat to leave the country.

April 1999 - Libya hands over the suspects in Lockerbie bombing. They are tried in Netherlands under Scottish law. The EU suspends sanctions against Libya, U.S. sanctions remain.

January 2001 - Three judges unanimously find Megrahi guilty of murder and acquit Fahima. Megrahi given mandatory life sentence to be served in a prison in Glasgow, Scotland.

March 2003 - Libya reaches political agreement with the U.S. and Britain to accept civil responsibility for the bombing.

-- December - Libya announces it will abandon weapons of mass destruction programmes and open its territory to international weapons inspectors.

March 2004 - Tony Blair becomes first British prime minister to visit Libya since Winston Churchill during World War Two.

May 2007 - Blair, in his second visit to Libya, hails what he calls Britain's transformed relations with Libya after meeting Gaddafi. The countries unveil energy and defence deals.

August 2009 - Megrahi is set free on compassionate grounds and arrives home to a hero's welcome. Britain condemns the celebrations in Tripoli.

September 2009 - British Prime Minister Gordon Brown rejects suggestions that his government put pressure on Scotland to release Megrahi to improve Britain's trade links with Libya.

December 2010 - Britain's Guardian newspaper, citing U.S. diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks, says Gaddafi threatened to cut trade with Britain and warned of "enormous repercussions" if Megrahi died in jail.

February 2011 - Britain says it is revoking more than 50 arms export licences for Bahrain and Libya in response to crackdowns on protesters. It condemns Gaddafi's use of violence as unacceptable.

March 2011 - Britain has frozen 12 billion pounds ($19.2 billion) of Libyan assets, Prime Minister David Cameron says on March 11. Britain has also lifted Gaddafi's diplomatic immunity.

-- Britain, part of the Western coalition carrying out air strikes on Gaddafi's forces to protect civilians, hosts an international conference on March 29, piling pressure on Gaddafi to quit. It also announces that a British diplomatic mission visited Benghazi meeting with key opposition figures.

-- On March 30, Britain expels five Libyan diplomats in protest at Libyan government actions. On the same day Libyan Foreign Minister Moussa Koussa, one of Gaddafi's closest advisers, defects to Britain in protest at attacks by Gaddafi forces on civilians.

May 1 - Libyan ambassador in Britain, Omar Jelban, is given 24 hours to leave after the government says its embassy in Tripoli was attacked. Two more diplomats are expelled on May 5.

July 27 - Britain recognises the opposition Transitional National Council as Libya's legitimate government. It also says that it will expel all remaining Libyan embassy staff from the country.

First Published: Jul 27, 2011 16:54 IST