- (Photo: Reuters/Thaier al-Sudani)
Omran Ben Shaaban, one of the men who pulled former Libyan dictator Colonel Moammar Gaddafi from a drainpipe before he was killed, has died after being kidnapped and tortured by Gaddafi supporters in July.
Shaaban died from the horrific injuries inflicted by a pro-Gaddafi group, and his body has already been buried.
His body was flown back to Libya via a private jet on Tuesday. He had been receiving treatment for his extensive injuries in France.
On Tuesday evening video footage apparently shows thousands of mourners gathering at a Misrata sports stadium. A photo was later posted of Shaaban in a casket with his face visible through a glass window.
The Libyan government had said it would give the 22 year old man a hero's funeral.
In July Shaaban and three of his friends were attacked and kidnapped by Gaddafi supporters near the southern town of Bani Walid. It was reported that Shaaban was shot twice and paralyzed from the waist down. He was tortured over a period of months and was only released earlier in September after Libya's president Mohammed el-Megarif negotiated his release, along with two of his friends. Upon their release they were described as just "skin and bones."
According to the Associated Press, Shaaban's brother, Abdullah, has said, "It was clear he was beaten a lot. His entire chest was sliced with razors. His face had changed. It wasn't my brother that I knew."
Although he was flown to France to receive medical treatment he died on Tuesday.
At the time of Gaddafi's capture there was an $800,000 reward put out for anyone able to capture the former Libyan leader. However, Shaaban allegedly never received the reward, although his brother has said he didn't mind and had considered it his duty to help capture Gaddafi.
Video footage of Gaddafi's capture shows him being dragged and beaten by a large group of rebels, including Shaaban, who was seen carrying a pistol.
Libya's authorities have pledged to do all they can to find Shaaban's killers.