Germany calls on UN to unblock frozen Libyan assets

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Germany on Tuesday called for a quick UN resolution to release frozen Libyan assets as a means of aiding the country's transition as Moamer Kadhafi's regime appears to crumble.

Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle of Germany, which currently holds a non-permanent seat on the United Nations Security Council, said repatriating Libyan funds would require a new resolution.

"In New York, we are working on creating the conditions for the UN Security Council to unblock the country's frozen assets abroad for the benefit of the Libyan people," he told reporters.

"The funds, which were frozen under political sanctions against the regime of Colonel Kadhafi, must be used rebuild Libya for the sake of its people," he added.

"In our view such a resolution must be passed as soon as possible."

The Security Council in February adopted sanctions against Kadhafi and his closest associates, including a freezing of their assets and a travel ban, in response to a bloody crackdown against insurgents.

Germany in March abstained on a vote at the council authorising a Libya mission to shield civilians and enforce a no-fly zone. It was the only European Union or NATO member to do so and provoked criticism from key allies.

© 2011 AFP

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