MISRATA, Libya – Flamboyant and grandiose in life, Moammar Gadhafi was buried in secrecy and anonymity in an unmarked grave in the Libyan desert that was home to his Bedouin tribal ancestors.

The burial Tuesday ended the gruesome spectacle of Gadhafi’s decaying corpse on public display in a cold storage locker at a Misrata warehouse for four days after he was killed in his hometown of Sirte.

The location of the brutal dictator’s grave site was not disclosed by the interim government for fear of vandalism by his foes and veneration by his die-hard supporters.

Gadhafi, 69, was buried Tuesday along with his son Muatassim and former Defense Minister Abu Bakr Younis after the military council in the city of Misrata ordered a reluctant Muslim cleric to say the required prayers.

Libya’s new leaders hope the funeral will allow the country to turn the page on the four-decade Gadhafi era and the bloody eight-month rebellion against him. Still, the book cannot be closed completely, with unanswered questions remaining about his slaying, and his son and one-time heir apparent, Seif al-Islam, still at large.

Under international pressure to investigate the circumstances of Gadhafi’s death, the interim leaders of the National Transitional Council issued a statement late Tuesday saying they “disapprove” of any prisoner being hurt, let alone killed. It was the first time the new leadership spoke out against Gadhafi’s killing.

“Regardless of the hatred that Libyans held for Moammar Gadhafi and his regime because of the suffering he inflicted, and how he soiled their reputation for four decades, we did not want to end this tyrant’s life before he was brought to court,” the statement said.