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Authorities there refused to hand the bodies over to national officials and buried them in a secret location.

Libya expert George Joffe of Cambridge University said the decision to keep Seif al-Islam in Zintan and possibly try him in that town shows that the NTC has a tenuous hold over the country.

“You are looking at an organization that has never been able to establish itself properly in the country,” Joffe said. “There is a degree of chaos and it is not clear that the NTC can grab control of it.”

Meanwhile, new details emerged about Seif al-Islam’s capture in which fighters swarmed a two-car convoy in the south of the country that some officials said was on its way to neighboring Niger. The car carrying him got stuck in the sand while trying to escape.

Al-Ajami al-Etery, who led the operation, said Seif al-Islam tried to hide his features by throwing sand on his face when he stepped out of his car.

“He said his name was Abdel-Salam and he pretended to be a shepherd, but we found him out and arrested him,” he told the AP.


Al-Shalchi reported from Cairo. Associated Press writer Toby Sterling in Amsterdam contributed to this report.