Libya and Germany Fail to Agree on Bomb Compensation | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 16.05.2004
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Libya and Germany Fail to Agree on Bomb Compensation

Negotiations between Libyan and German officials over compensation for the victims of a 1986 Berlin bombing ended unsuccessfully in Berlin on Sunday. The talks will continue in June.


Gadhafi's charity is expected to compensate the victims.

Both sides said they hope to reach an agreement at the next meeting, Reuters news agency reported. "We've made rapid progress in these last four rounds of talks and this gives us justified hope that we can reach full agreement in a fifth round in June," German lawyer Hans-Joachim Ehrig said after three days of talks in the German capital that also involved officials from Germany's foreign ministry.

But Ehrig added that there was still a "significant gap" over how much money the more than 160 people wounded in the attack should receive.

Bombenanschlag auf Diskotek La Belle

Berlin's La Belle disco after the attack on April 5, 1986.

The bomb at West Berlin's "La Belle" disco killed two U.S. soldiers and a Turkish woman. The Libyan secret service allegedly plotted the attack. In 2001, a German court convicted four people, including a former Libyan diplomat, for their involvement in the attacks.

While representatives for the charitable foundation of Libyan leader Moammar Gadhafi offered to pay $325,000 (€275,000) to each of the 11 people most seriously injured in the attack, the German lawyers are seeking $600,000. The Libyans are also offering $125,000 to each of the other victims, compared to the $400,000 demanded by the Germans.

An agreement is important for Libya since the country's admission to an EU partnership program with Mediterranean countries hinges on it. Participation in the program would help Libya in its attempts to rejoin the international community, lift trade restrictions and bring financial aid to the North African state.

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