Bush signs bill to settle Libya terror lawsuits

US President George W. Bush signed legislation Monday that allows the State Department to settle all remaining lawsuits against Libya by US terrorism victims and paves the way for complete rapprochement between Washington and Tripoli. The last rifts between the US and Libya can now be cleared, once the country fully compensates Americans harmed in Libyan-sponsored attacks, including the 1988 bombing of Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland and the 1986 bombing of the La Belle discotheque in Berlin. It creates a new fund to compensate the victims and grants Libya immunity from terror-related lawsuits once the secretary of state certifies that they have been paid. Congress has blocked direct aid to Libya, as well as the construction of a new US embassy there and the confirmation of the first US ambassador to the nation, until US victims are paid.