This article is from the archive of our partner .

Human Rights Watch has discovered the bodies of 53 people, believed to be supporters of former Libyan leader Muammar Qaddafi, that appear to have been executed approximately one week ago.

The bodies were discovered at a hotel in Sirte, which had been under the control of rebel fighters before the fighting in the city ended last week. The victims were found clustered in the hotel garden, all of them shot, and some with their hands tied behind their back or suffering from other wounds.

The names of several anti-Qaddafi militias were also scrawled on the hotel's walls.

The discovery comes amid continuing concerns about the fate of Qaddafi himself. It is still not known whether the dictator's fatal wounds were the result of battle or rough treatment from his captors after being captured. An autopsy confirmed that Qaddafi died of a gunshot wound to the head, but it's not clear when that injury took place.

The United Nations, with the support of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has called for an investigation of his final moments. Human Rights Watch says the latest discovery also demands a closer look at the behavior of the rebel fighters.

Meanwhile, the new transitional government tried to put a formal end to the country's eight-month revolution/civil war, declaring during a ceremony on Sunday that the war has ended and announcing plans for elections and a new Islamic government.

This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.

We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to