• Germany's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Westerwelle plays down engagement in Libya

The Local · 23 Aug 2011, 09:15

Published: 23 Aug 2011 09:15 GMT+02:00

The statement by Westerwelle to public broadcaster ZDF came amid concerns about Germany becoming involved in a quagmire in Libya following what appeared to the be the imminent collapse of Qaddafi’s regime.

“It may be that Libya is developing into the new Somalia,” said Peter Scholl-Latour, a former journalist and one of German's most respected Middle East experts. “The Islamists are waiting.”

Although the German military has not been directly involved in the NATO military campaign to weaken Qaddafi’s regime, it appears possible that peacekeeping soldiers could eventually be sent to the country.

Defence Minister Thomas de Maizière suggested they could be used to maintain peace in Libya and help prop up democratic institutions.

Westerwelle avoided speaking directly about German military involvement and said Libyans must decide their own future.

But he also promised future German assistance to help create a vibrant civil society, independent judiciary and ensure free and fair elections.

As of Tuesday, however, much remained unclear and in flux. Despite reports of his capture, one of Qaddafi’s sons visited journalists overnight and was taking them on tours of the capital city Tripoli.

And in the face of the rebellion’s lightning march into Tripoli, NATO members, including Germany, were mulling what to do next – including the possibility of the transitional government will soon be asking for direct military assistance.

Story continues below…

“NATO should consider very carefully how it would react in such a case,” Ruprecht Polenz, a member of Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservatives and the chairman of the Bundestag’s foreign affairs committee, told the Passauer Neue Presse newspaper.

The Local/DAPD/mdm

The Local (news@thelocal.de)

Your comments about this article

09:31 August 23, 2011 by TheCrownPrince
The less german involvement in Libya, the better. The government would lose the rest of credibility if german troops would be sent now that the NATO-attacks are over. Besides, I don't want to see any german soldiers there as "peace-keepers" in this mess, they have no business there. Let the French or the British send troops, they started the NATO-involvement. The whole country is doomed for years to come: tribes, clans and regional warlords all fighting for power. It will be interesting to see what kind of government follows Gadaffi, if any "government" at all. Sadly, every cent of development aid is wasted in the current situation, and trying to help Libya to build up a "democracy" is just a bad joke.
11:45 August 23, 2011 by Sastry.M
Let the federal govt. of United Germany take note that they themselves are the Reps. of hard won democracy by the hardest suffered people on earth abused with both physical destruction as well moral accusation suffering the rule of an erstwhile dictatorship.

We in India are desperately suffering from corruption fallen prey to foreign loans and forked tongue preachings of assurance by super powers but pursued with self serving interests of double standard foreign policies. Germany has only been the one western nation who really wished India well right from the inception of freedom struggle though to the development of national construction shown with true empathy. This parallel of spiritual consonance may be because of common sufferings of both people under foreign subjugation and fight for truth and justice as the motto of India declares "Sathyameva Jayathe" (Truth only wins).

For all the greatest service rendered by the Germans to Indian spiritual and cultural heritage let their great nation stand erect to the cause of Truth as a friendly nation and . as deemed necessary, take inspiration from Anna Hazare's peaceful movement for truth and against corruption.

Let it be remembered that Germany withstood the worst embargoes against her industry since 1920's and the Truth of hard and disciplined work with positive spirit of hope in all national reconstruction displayed the mark of people whether under harsh dictatorship or raising from ruins in the aftermath of ww-2 with a hard won freedom kept up under democracy to the present day.
13:08 August 23, 2011 by marimay
I've never laughed so hard at anything posted on this site before.
13:41 August 23, 2011 by storymann
There is a modicum of fact in SastyM opinion.

Nazi Germany supported Indian political leader Subhash Chandra Bose's bid for armed struggle against British colonial rule and helped organize the Indian National Army along with Japan.

Many would consider this self-serving,however
15:34 August 25, 2011 by Sastry.M
@storymann,

Many thanks for bringing out a modicum of fact which bespeaks of greater truth. Right from the inception of Indian freedom struggle participation of two distinct classes of people was apparent,namely, the more outspoken and vehement (Athivad) and the receptive and soft spoken (Mithavad). The former was initiated by Bal Gangadhar Tilak who inspired Subhash Chandra Bose and the latter belonged to Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru. Many belonged to Mithavad because of Indian philosophical pacifism in general while a far and few Athivad group, however, did possess self serving concerns of vehement armed protest . Many such break away sympathizers formed the Indian National Army led by Netaji(leader) S.C Bose first enrolled in the Axis Army of Nazi Germany but due to strategic difficulties later organized as Azad Hind Fouz (Indian Liberation Army) helped by the nearer Japs.

Worthy of note,however, is that majority Indian regular army fought on side the Allies along with the Australians from far east and the Canadians from far west. Did their human sacrifices find equitable recognition and representation during the war crimes and genocide trials of Nueremberg aganst Nazi atrocities? Even if this is considered major allies' prerogative why did the U.S wantonly dropped Atom Bombs months after the major Axis power Germany surrendered unconditionally and the war was as good as over on larger area. The Japs could be forced to intimidated surrender with a demonstration of destruction under nuclear explosion but many innocent civilians perished under real time phased testing of the A.bombs using the Jap.cities as testbeds. Whose inquisitive self did this atrocious act serve -the nuclear scientists who developed the Bomb or the Politicians to threaten all humanity with their destructive prowess?
Today's headlines
Munich pulls together after shopping mall shooting
Photo: DPA

In the chaos after the Munich mall shooting, city residents spontaneously offered shelter to strangers - a move that Chancellor Angela Merkel said showed that Germany's strength lies in its values.

Merkel deplores 'night of horror' in Munich
Photo: DPA

Chancellor Angela Merkel on Saturday said Munich had suffered a "night of horror" after a shooting spree in the southern German city left nine people dead.

Munich shooting
Munich attacker was shy video game fan
People laying flowers at the site of the shootings. Photo: DPA.

David Ali Sonboly was a quiet, helpful teenager who loved playing video games. His neighbours say there were no warning signs before his deadly rampage at a Munich shopping mall.

Munich shooting
Munich gunman inspired by rightwing Breivik: police
Photo: DPA

The lone teenager who shot dead nine people in a gun rampage in Munich was "obsessed" with mass killers such as Norwegian rightwing fanatic Anders Behring Breivik and had no links to the Islamic State group, police said Saturday.

Munich shooting
Turks, Kosovans and a Greek among shooting victims
Photo: DPA

Three Turkish citizens were among the nine people killed in Germany's Munich mall shooting. Three Kosovans were also among the nine victims.

Munich shooting
Munich gunman was likely not Isis terrorist: police
Flowers laid at the Olympia Shopping Centre underground station. Photo: DPA

According to initial investigations by Munich police, the young man who went on a shooting rampage in Munich on Friday evening was a lone gunman without motive, not a terrorist.

Munich shooting
'Lone' Munich shooter kills nine, commits suicide
Photo: DPA

A teenage German-Iranian gunman who killed nine people in a shooting spree at a busy Munich shopping centre and then committed suicide had likely acted alone, German police said Saturday.

As it happened
Nine dead in shooting rampage in Munich
File photo: DPA

Nine people are dead after "at least one person" went on a shooting spree in a Munich shopping centre on Friday evening. An attacker is believed to be among the dead.

German Turkish community split by unrest after coup plot
Pro-Erdogan protesters in Berlin. Photo: DPA

Hatred between supporters of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and those opposed to him has exploded on social media in Germany in the wake of a failed coup attempt last Friday.

Germany stresses defence of Baltics after Trump comments
Photo: DPA

Germany on Friday stressed its promise to protect its NATO allies after White House hopeful Donald Trump called the commitment into question.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Analysis & Opinion
Nice was an attack on France, not on Germany
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
National
Bavaria train attack: Were police right to shoot to kill?
National
How to get German citizenship (or just stay forever)
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Technology
Brexit will turn Berlin into 'Europe’s startup capital'
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
Travel
Six soothing day trips to escape the bustle of Berlin
International
'Germany needs to make UK come to its senses'
Features
Six odd things Germans do in the summer
Travel
These 10 little-known German towns are a must see
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
Features
How two gay dads cut through German red tape to start a family
National
Five things to know about guns in Germany
Sponsored Article
Health insurance for expats in Germany: a quick guide
Culture
10 things you need to know before attending a German wedding
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
National
Eight weird habits you'll pick up living in Germany
Lifestyle
Six reasons 'super-cool' Berlin isn't all it's cracked up to be
Society
Only one country likes getting naked on the beach more than Germany
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Lifestyle
23 ridiculously fascinating things you never knew about Berlin
Culture
8 German words that perfectly sum up your 20s
Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Lifestyle
Can't make it past the door at Berlin's most famous club? Help is at hand
Business & Money
Why Frankfurt could steal London's crown as Europe's finance capital
Features
6 surprising things I learned about Germany while editing The Local
Culture
Five sure-fire ways to impress Germans with your manners
10,808
jobs available
Toytown Germany
Germany's English-speaking crowd