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national transitional council
moammar gadhafi
international criminal court
crimes against humanity
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Libya NTC Forces: Are They Guilty Of War Crimes In The Killing Of Gadhafi And Others?
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Libya NTC Forces: Are They Guilty Of War Crimes In the Killing Of Gadhafi And Others?

Video and grainy photos show the Libyan strong man captured alive but wounded. Moments later, other videos and photos show Moammar Gadhafi dead, his head covered in blood, his lifeless body shirtless and being dragged around in front of a cheering mob of people. Now the United Nation's High Commission for Human Right, Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch as well as the US Secretary of State are calling for an investigation in what happened in the moments during Gadhafi's capture and his actual death. And, if there is no way of proving that the incident was a case of crossfire, it is likely that the death will be ruled a murder and war crime charges can be filed against the National Transitional Council.

The International Criminal Court, which had previously filed charges on Gadhafi, his sons and several top ranking officials in his regime are demanding to examine the body themselves. The bodies have been buried in a secret location for fear that the graves will be desecrated or worse, dug up. A Libyan doctor performed an autopsy, concluding that the former leader had been killed by a single gun shot wound to the head.

There have been conflicting accounts for what happened after Gadhafi was captured and virtually no way to actually confirm a cross fire situation. The ICC would like to know if he was killed by a bullet fired at some distance or whether it was fired at close range which indicates that it was someone near to him that killed him, an act of intentional murder. If that is the case, the death of Gadhafi is in direct violation of the code of war set forth by the Geneva Convention and would be chargeable as a war crime.

The ICC has been monitoring Libya since the conflict began earlier in the year and has jurisdiction over war crimes and crimes against humanity there. So far, there has been no charges filed against the NTC because the court was looking at the overall picture and long standing history of atrocities commited by the Gadhafi regime, but that can be changing as the focus shifts to the new day in the nation.

Reports have been received that as many as fifty people or more have been found dead in a hotel in the city of Sirte, Gadhafi's hometown. NTC fighters had gained control of that hotel during intense fighting there with hold out loyalists. The condition of the bodies might indicate that these were retailiatory killings, meant to punish people for remaining loyal to their former leader. Each body was found with their hands clasped and bound behind their back and a single shot to the head, execution style.


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