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Gaddafi’s burial delayed


BEA DOTTIN, [email protected]

Gaddafi’s burial delayed

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Col Gaddafi’s burial has been delayed by differences among officials about what should be done with the body.
Under Islamic tradition burial should have taken place as soon as possible. But Libya’s oil minister said the remains may be kept “for a few days”.
It is unclear whether the ex-leader will be buried in Sirte, where he was captured on Thursday, in Misrata where the body has been taken, or elsewhere.
Meanwhile NATO is expected to declare an end to its Libya campaign.
French President Nicolas Sarkozy said the death of Muammar Gaddafi meant Nato’s military intervention had reached its conclusion.
“Clearly the operation is coming to its end,” he told reporters.
The BBC’s Caroline Hawley in Tripoli says the authorities now have to decide how to deal with Col Gaddafi’s death and in particular his burial.
They have said they will conduct a secret burial and there is some speculation that they might even try to bury him at sea, as happened with al-Qaeda leader Osama Bin Laden, to prevent any grave being turned into a shrine, she adds.
Col Gaddafi’s body is lying in a meat storage room in Misrata. Oil Minister Ali Tarhouni told Reuters news agency it would not be released for immediate burial.
“I told them to keep it in the freezer for a few days . . . to make sure that everybody knows he is dead,” he said.
Asked about the burial arrangements, he said: “There is no decision yet.”
A correspondent says the National Transitional Council (NTC) needs to co-ordinate with the fighters who captured him in his hometown of Sirte and who have taken him to Misrata.
Reuters news agency quotes senior NTC commander Abdel Majid Mlegta as saying members of the colonel’s tribe are in contact with anti-Gaddafi fighters to discuss the possibility of taking on the task of burying him. (BBC)

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