Ex-Libyan leader Muammar Gadhafi, his son Mutassim and a top aide have all been buried at a secret location in the desert, according to Libyan officials.
The National Transitional Council (NTC) chose to dispose of the bodies in an unknown location to prevent the grave becoming a shrine for Gadhafi loyalists, or a target for those who opposed his regime.
The burial took place at dawn on Tuesday, and one Dubai-based TV channel broadcast what it claims to be footage of the funeral. In the video, a group of men dressed as civilians can be seen standing around three wooden coffins.
Libyan officials say a handful of relatives and officials attended the ceremony, and that Islamic prayers were read.
Mystery still surrounds Gadhafi’s capture, however. The despot was shown alive in footage of his capture by NTC forces, but was later found by doctors to have suffered a bullet wound to the head. Since that footage was released, acting Libyan leader Mustafa Abdul Jalil says the NTC has launched a committee to investigate the circumstances surrounding Gadhafi’s death.
Immediately after his demise, the dictator’s remains were put on display in a meat storage warehouse in Misrata. The corpse remained there for approximately three days before being buried, with civilians queuing for hours to view the body themselves.
An NTC official has told Reuters news agency that a burial was needed because the body had decomposed to the point at which “the corpse cannot last any longer.”