Germany Favors Ban on Exports to Libya

BERLIN (AP) -- The German government says it would support a ban on the export of boats from the European Union to Libya as part of measures to stem the flow of migrants across the Mediterranean.

Smugglers use often rickety vessels to ferry thousands of migrants from the north African country to Europe each month. Mass drownings are common when the overloaded boats capsize or sink.

In a response to questions from Left Party lawmakers, the German government says it considers "imposing restrictive measures" on EU exports of boats, engines and vehicles to Libya to be an appropriate measure to crack down on people smuggling.

The response, obtained Thursday by The Associated Press, also confirms that the EU naval mission deployed to stop illegal migration uses submarines for "covert reconnaissance" in the region.