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[p2-dev] Querying remote p2 repositories

I'm looking for a simple way to query a remote p2 repository (simple and/or composite). The p2-API documentation at help.eclipse.org indicates that this can be done in the context of having a ProvisioningAgent representing the "p2 area" of an Eclipse installation.
My context is different. I want to query a p2 repository in the context of a Maven/Tycho build and therefore cannot refer to any profile or "p2 area". Therefore, I'm looking for some basic p2 infrastructure which can read (or even query) the metadata of a remote repository basically by providing the URL. While I could write some stuff to read and analyze a remote content.xml file, things get more complex if I want to abstract from having simple and/or composite repositories which differ in their file layouts and decomposition into multiple metadata sources. Having something which could do this abstraction for me would be helpful.
Thanks for any suggestions ...