German Chancellor Angela Merkel's conservative Bavarian allies agreed to give her two weeks' breathing space yesterday (18 June) to find a European solution to a row over immigration that threatens to scupper her three-month-old coalition government.
Their meeting, to prepare for an European Union summit on June 28-29, had been dubbed a "moment of truth" for bilateral relations by France's finance minister, as Paris has pressed Berlin for months to agree reforms to crisis-proof the bloc.
Commenting on the supposed deadline for Merkel to negotiate an EU-wide solution, Seehofer said that "the whole issue is not about these 14 days but about fundamental differences" between the leadership of the two sister parties.
"Emergency talks have, as yet, failed to soothe an increasingly bitter row, which is being replicated, albeit in perhaps rather calmer tones, in plenty of other European Union member states - between those who believe there is still a chance for Europe to rise unified to the migration challenge and the, largely populist, figures who are sick of waiting for it act", adds the author.
Read the full story at the BBC. However the dispute ends, it has exposed her government's fragility at a hard time for the continent.
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Merkel told reporters she was still convinced that Europe needed to work together to combat the causes of the refugee flow by helping improve conditions in the countries of origin while at the same time increasing security at Europe's outer borders and cracking down on smugglers.
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They pointed out that Germany's crime rate is at its lowest since 1992, according to Interior Ministry figures released last month. "Big mistake made all over Europe in allowing millions of people in who have so strongly and violently changed their culture!" he tweeted. On Sunday, he said, however, that no one wants a break-up of Merkel's ruling coalition. 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.
At a meeting of the CSU leadership in Munich, the Bavarian party agreed to push for a policy on turning away migrants who had earlier been banned from Germany to be implemented immediately, but postponed until after an European Union summit at the end of June a ban on the previously registered, officials said.
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The CSU hopes its tough line will help it see off a challenge from the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany (AfD) party in wealthy Bavaria's October election.
That, an unnamed CDU source told Bild daily, "would be the end of the government and the alliance between CDU and CSU".
"We stick to our position that should the immediate rejection at the border not be possible, I would immediately order the police that people who either have prohibition of entry or prohibition of stay should be immediately turned away at the border", he said.
Leaving aside the fact that Germany has vastly different immigration patterns than the USA and a shorter history of welcoming immigrants, Mr. Trump's claim that crime is up in Germany is objectively false. Earlier, Merkel argued against the current proposal by saying Berlin can't unilaterally shut its borders.
"It is in Germany's interest to achieve the regulation of migration in a good partnership with our European neighbours", Merkel said after her CDU's leadership met.
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