Nightly News   |  October 22, 2011

Post-Gadhafi transition begins in Libya

Sunday will be liberation day in Libya, marking the official end of Moammar Gadhafi's regime. NBC's Adrienne Mong reports.

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LESTER HOLT, anchor: So much history begin written in the Middle East this week. In Libya tonight, they're getting ready for liberation day tomorrow, marking the official end of the Gadhafi regime and the death of the man who held power for more than four decades. NBC 's Adrienne Mong is there for us tonight.

Unidentified Man #1:

ADRIENNE MONG reporting: For the second day in a row, they came from around the country to Misrata to see the body of their former dictator, Moammar Gadhafi 's corpse lying in a commercial freezer. NBC News has learned Gadhafi 's body will be buried tomorrow in a private location. Leaders of the interim government say they're still investigating the exact cause of his death amidst growing international questions over whether he was executed by rebel forces or died in crossfire as the prime minister has said.

Mr. CLAUDIO CORDONE (Amnesty International): How he died matters because if Libya is to break away from the abuses of the past, that one clear signal would be that the new authorities are absolutely determined to ensure respect for human rights.

MONG: Here in Misrata , many Libyans think otherwise.

Unidentified Man #2: This -- what Libyan want see Gadhafi is dead. That's my dream.

Unidentified Man #3: Victory for people, for Libyan people. So we are so happy here.

MONG: More details have emerged about his last weeks on the run. A trusted aide captured with Gadhafi said the late leader never actually took part in the fighting, preferring to read or talk on his satellite phone. One of his sons, Saif al-Islam remains at large. In the meantime, the post- Gadhafi transition has begun. The prime minister says an election will be held within eight months for a national council that will draft a new constitution and form an interim government. The celebrations taking place across the country the past two days are continuing through the weekend, gearing up for the big day tomorrow, when the first chapter of a new Libya opens with the official announcement in Benghazi of the nation's liberation. Adrienne Mong, NBC News, Misrata , Libya .