22 October, 2011, 21:05Published:
Libyan National Transitional Council (NTC) fighters celebrate in the eastern coastal city of Sirte following news of Muammar Gaddafi's capture and death on October 20, 2011 (AFP Photo / Ahmad Al-Rubaye)
As the international community demands an investigation into the murky death of Muammar Gaddafi, a young NTC fighter has added controversy to the case by saying that he shot the deposed ruler.
Claims made by Sanad al-Sadek al-Ureibi in a video leaked onto the Internet on Friday contradicts earlier reports made by the NTC which said that Gaddafi died of his wounds after being caught in crossfire between his supporters and NTC forces.
“We came across Gaddafi in a street, as he was walking with some children and girls,” the man said.
“I fired two bullets at him. One hit under his armpit, the other his head. He did not die immediately. It took him half an hour.”
The young fighter claimed that he did not like the idea of taking Gaddafi alive.
The men interviewing al-Ureibi showed a bloodied shirt allegedly taken from the dead Gaddafi and a golden ring engraved with the name of the colonel’s second wife, Safia, to the camera.
Libya’s interim government has not yet commented on the man's claims although they run counter to the official version of the event.
Dr Ibrahim Tika, who performed the post-mortem examination of the deposed leader’s body, said he had been shot in the abdomen and head.
The UN Human Rights Office and Amnesty International are calling for an investigation into Gaddafi’s death as it raises concerns over what may be the unlawful killing of a prisoner.
However, Dr Benjamin Barber, an analyst at a US think tank, does not expect anyone will be held accountable for the colonel's death.
“The question is whom they expect to hold accountable – one individual soldier who in the frenzy of battle did it, the militia from Misrata of which that individual was a part, or the NATO forces that in effect bombed the caravan?” he told RT.
“There will be a lot of talk here and in the end nothing will happen because everybody inside Libya and outside Libya will be basically glad that he’s dead and not alive,” he explained.
Middle East expert Shirin Sagedhi also doubts whether the person who killed Muammar Gaddafi will be persecuted and says that the international community now calling for an investigation has also been “complicit” in his death.
In fact, it now does not really matter if anybody will be held accountable, Sagedhi told RT. “The only thing that mattered from the beginning of the war was that Gaddafi would die. And that’s done now.”
According to the expert, the gruesome and public killing of Gaddafi was insulting to the people of Libya and the people of the region, as well as the “idea that democratic forces would brutally kill someone like that.”
Gaddafi held Libya’s tribes and ethnicities together, Sagedhi noted. “What we are going to see over the next months and years is massive tribal, and specifically, ethnic divisions,” she warned.
She concluded that NATO is not going to leave Libya completely as it has “serious corporate and business interests” in the country.