Germany open to troops in post-Kadhafi Libya: minister

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Germany would be ready to consider sending peacekeeping troops to Libya if and when strongman Moamer Kadhafi falls from power, Defence Minister Thomas de Maiziere said Thursday.

Speaking to reporters at a meeting of NATO defence ministers in Brussels, de Maiziere said it was still early to define the international role in a post-Kadhafi Libya.

"We hope there will be a solution which does not require a military presence there (in Libya) but instead economic or infrastructure assistance, perhaps with the formation of security forces," he said.

"But should it happen differently, then we would examine it and we would constructively examine it."

As NATO allies hold talks on the shape of a post-conflict Libya, the defence minister's comments indicated for the first time that Berlin was prepared to play a possible role in a stabilisation force.

Germany abstained from a UN Security Council resolution backing intervention in Libya and chose not to participate in the NATO-led air war launched in March.

De Maiziere said Germany would require a United Nations mandate in order to join a post-conflict mission.

© 2011 AFP

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