As Libyan transitional leaders make preparations for the burial of slain former leader Moammar Gadhafi, the U.N. human rights office is calling for an investigation into whether international human rights laws were followed during Gadhafi’s capture and killing.
"We believe there is a need for an investigation," U.N. human rights spokesperson Rupert Colville told reporters in Geneva. "More details are needed to ascertain whether he was killed in some form of fighting or was executed after his capture."
Gadhafi was killed Thursday after rebels captured him in his hometown of Sirte. The U.N. Human Rights Council previously sent an envoy to Libya to investigate claims of human rights abuses occurring in the country. Coleville said this same mission would also look into Gadhafi’s death.
“It is a fundamental principle of international law that people accused of serious crimes should, if possible, be tried. Summary executions are strictly illegal. It is different if someone is killed in combat,” Coleville told Reuters Television.
The U.N. is not the only international body interested in gathering details about Gadhafi’s death.
According to Islamic law, Gadhafi must be buried within 24 hours; however, reports say that the government officials are waiting for representatives from International Criminal Court to come and examine the body. The court says that it needs official confirmation of Gadhafi’s death before they can formally withdraw his indictment.
(Photo: AP Photo/Abdel Magid al-Fergany)