Merkel, Macron to talk European Union reform in shadow of migrant crisis

Marco Green
June 19, 2018

Seehofer reportedly said he would only start turning away all migrants who have registered elsewhere if no solution is found at the European Union level.

"We wish the chancellor much luck", Horst Seehofer, who is also German interior minister told a news conference after the CSU unanimously backed his new immigration plan.

In an editorial for German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ), Seehofer said he hoped the European Union summit later this month would "finally reach agreements acknowledging Germany's [refugee] burden, ensure the effective protection of the EU's external borders, the fair distribution of people with the right to stay and the rapid deportation of those without".

Merkel said there were two legal acts - including one on solidarity - on which there was not yet agreement in the European Union, adding: "It will need to be the case - and I will of course discuss this with my partners - that it's not just us who can demand something but we also need to talk about what is important for others".

US President Donald Trump said migrants were violently changing Europe's culture.

The disagreement has opened up a serious rift between Mrs Merkel's Christian Democrats and Mr Seehofer's Bavarian CSU party - two parties that have been closely aligned since the end of the World War Two. In accepting the compromise, Merkel looks to be having a last throw of the dice to avert unilateral action by Germany that she argues would risk a "domino effect", collapsing the entire European Union asylum process and unravel the bloc's already frayed unity. If Seehofer actually goes ahead and implements it unilaterally in defiance of Merkel, it could set off a chain of events that would bring down Germany's coalition government. Germany's CSU is running scared because they have aligned themselves with a chancellor who is seen as not caring that her policies have allowed criminal aliens to run wild. It was supposed to be put before the Cabinet last week, but Merkel refused to approve the point about turning back people at the borders.

Seehofer said he had told fellow leaders that "we're not out of the woods yet".

Her position as chancellor is now in question, but it remains unclear precisely how the situation will develop.

"The Italian borders are European borders", he said.

But he was long left waiting for a response from Berlin as Merkel, weakened by poor September election results, was occupied by half a year of arduous coalition talks.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends the board meeting of Germany's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in Berlin, Germany, June 18 2018. Monday's compromise means he can introduce immediate expulsion for one subset of migrants. More than 1 million migrants came to Germany in 2015 and 2016, though numbers have since dropped sharply. Asked recently whether she and her party can continue to lead the country through to its 2021 mandate and whether she is in full control, she said: "Yes to both", according to ABC News.

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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