Germans hostile to more military missions, poll finds
BERLIN — Three-quarters of Germans are hostile to the idea of increasing the country's military missions abroad, a poll for Deutsche Presse-Agentur showed Friday.
The survey by YouGov pollsters on behalf of dpa found that 45 per cent of Germans believe the country's military is already too active abroad, while an additional 30 per cent of those polled think current foreign deployments are just right.
Only 12 per cent, by contrast, think the German military is not doing enough abroad.
The poll, which interviewed 1,010 people, was published one day after UN secretary general Ban Ki-moon urged Germany to show more leadership.
Germany currently has nearly 5,000 personnel abroad, mainly in Afghanistan, Kosovo and in naval operations.
Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen has pushed for more active military help to France, and the topic is likely to be debated further at this weekend's Munich Security Conference.
Ban said Thursday after meeting Merkel: "I asked her to demonstrate her leadership in Syria and in Central Africa and in many other areas."
The YouGov poll found that 58 per cent of respondents believe it is better for Germany to contribute diplomacy and money to settle conflicts rather than use military force. Only 20 per cent said Germany should be more active as a NATO ally.