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The Independent Online
Germany's highest court has turned down an offer from the UN Secretary-General, Boutros Boutros-Ghali, to testify at its hearing on an attempt to bar German troops from Somalia, Reuter reports from Bonn.

Mr Boutros-Ghali, who is to visit Bonn tomorrow, had offered in a letter to Chancellor Helmut Kohl to testify before the court in Karlsruhe on the importance of a German role in the UN peace-keeping mission in Somalia. Mr Kohl's government has started deploying 1,700 troops to Somalia but opposition Social Democrats have asked the court to halt the mission, arguing Bonn is violating military curbs in its 1949 constitution.

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