Thursday, June 02, 2005

German lawmakers extend Kosovo peacekeeping mission for another year

BERLIN (AP) - Lawmakers on Thursday overwhelmingly approved the participation of German troops in the NATO peacekeeping force in Kosovo for another year.

The lower house of parliament voted 575-7 to approve the extension requested by the government.

NATO-led peacekeepers moved into the province following the alliance's 1999 war aimed at stopping Serb forces' crackdown on independence-seeking ethnic Albanians.

Berlin currently supplies about 2,600 of the 17,000 troops in the province, which is administered by the United Nations and whose status remains disputed.

The extra year's deployment is expected to cost the German government about euro202 million (US$246.5 million).

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