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Sunday, 11 February, 2001, 06:36 GMT
Bomber wants public execution
Scene of the Oklahoma bomb blast
The worst terrorist attack on US soil
The man convicted of carrying out the 1995 Oklahoma bomb attack which killed 168 people has appealed for his execution to be made public.

Timothy McVeigh is due to die by lethal injection on 16 May.

A reasonable solution seems obvious: hold a true public execution - allow a public broadcast

Timothy McVeigh
In a letter written to a local newspaper, the Sunday Oklahoman, he appealed for his execution to be made available to as wide an audience as possible.

About 250 relatives of victims of the Oklahoma bombing have expressed an interest in watching him die - but the federal penitentiary where McVeigh is due to be executed has just eight places for witnesses.

In the past, some states have allowed relatives of murder victims to witness executions on closed-circuit television.

But in his letter to the newspaper, McVeigh questions the fairness of puttting limits on the number of witnesses.

Timothy McVeigh
McVeigh: Wants equal access for victims
"A reasonable solution seems obvious: hold a true public execution - allow a public broadcast," he writes.

A Gulf War veteran, McVeigh stands to become the first person in America executed under federal, rather than state, jurisdiction in nearly 40 years.

Late last year, he gave up attempts to appeal against his conviction and asked to be executed.

The move was a major shift from his attempts, since being sentenced to death in 1997, to have a retrial.

McVeigh argues that he is mentally fit to be executed, but has given no explanation as to why he is no longer appealing against his death sentence.

Accomplice serving life

The Oklahoma City bomb attack, on a federal government building in the city, was the worst terrorist attack on US soil.

Nineteen children were among the dead, and more than 500 people were injured.

McVeigh, currently behind bars in an Indiana federal prison, was found guilty of driving a lorry laden with explosives into the Alfred P Murrah Federal Building on 19 April 1995.

His former army friend Terry Nichols is serving life imprisonment after being found guilty in a separate trial of conspiracy to carry out the bombing.

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See also:

08 Oct 99 | Americas
Oklahoma bomb figure re-sentenced
16 Jan 01 | Americas
Oklahoma bomber to die in May
05 Jun 98 | Americas
Life sentence for Oklahoma bomber
28 May 98 | Americas
Key Oklahoma bombing witness jailed
21 Jun 98 | Americas
Jurors visit Oklahoma bombing site
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