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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

German Somali Abuse

BONN () -- Germany's Defense Ministry said Wednesday it was investigating allegations that military policemen stationed in Somalia during a UN mission abused Somalis accused of stealing camp supplies.

The ministry said it was dismayed by the charges, made public by a television program, that soldiers threatened to cut off the hands of suspected thieves to make them confess.

The news show Monitor on ARD public television said commanders were informed of the allegations during the Somalia mission, which ended last March, but had not disciplined the soldiers.

Germany sent 1,700 soldiers to the northern town of Belet Huen in July 1993 to join UN peacekeepers. It was Bonn's first big deployment under a new policy, adopted after German unification in 1990, to send troops abroad.

The soldiers from a Bavarian unit allegedly waved axes in front of Somali suspects and kept some chained overnight to tent stakes, Monitor said in excerpts from the script of its report released before broadcast Thursday.