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Germany and China Express Reservations over Libya Action

German troops will not be taking part in the Libyan action. Photo courtesy Bundeswehr/Rott

Chinese Foreign Minister Yang Jiechi has called for dialogue on the situation in Libya and for respect for Libya’s sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity.

In a call to the German Foreign Minister, Guido Westerwelle, on Thursday 24th March 2011 Mr Yang expressed China’s concern over civilian deaths resulting from the air strikes launched by Western powers, and urged an immediate cease-fire by related parties.

According to Mr Yang, China supports the diplomatic efforts by the special envoy of UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, the African Union and Arab League, which aim to avoid escalation of the armed conflict and humanitarian crisis in Libya.

On 23rd March 2011, Guido Westerwelle made a speech to the German Bundestag stating that German troops would not be contributed to the efforts in Libya:

On 17 March the United Nations Security Council adopted Resolution 1973. Following the decision in New York, it is valid, binding international law. While we support the aims underlying this Resolution, the Federal Government reached a different conclusion on the instruments than the majority of Security Council members. After weighing up the risks, including the risk of escalation, a process not without its difficulties, we decided that no German soldiers will take part in this operation. The Federal Armed Forces will not be sent to Libya. That doesn’t mean that we are neutral. We agree with the goal of protecting the civilian population, and of course also with the goal of stopping the dictator in his tracks.

We respect the decision of the international community, which is, I repeat, valid law. And so we too hope that it will be a success. That’s why the Federal Government has decided to help ease the burden on our allies, without sending the Federal Armed Forces to participate in a military operation in Libya.

The action in Libya has so far received broader support than usual for an intervention owing to the pro-action stance of France.

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Editors and staff from the News Desk at The Global Herald.

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