German government on brink of collapse as allies turn against Angela Merkel over immigration

PC: Sky News

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The German Government in Berlin is on the brink of collapse amid controversy over immigration concerns. The coalition between Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and the Bavarian Christian Social Union (CSU) has fractured over the latter’s new proposed policy that would turn away more asylum seekers at the country’s borders. In 2015, her ‘open door’ policy to migrants saw approximately a million refugees flood into the country. Although migrant arrivals have dropped steeply in the past two years, Germany still registered around 11,000 new asylum-seekers each month.

German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, who belongs to coalition partner CSU, has said that he ‘cannot work with Merkel anymore’. Angela Merkel is adamant about her stance on the issue, and claims that Germany’s refusal to take in immigrants will put a severe burden on the likes of Spain, Greece and Italy, which she feels will further disintegrate the already shaky European Union. “Personally, I think that illegal migration is one of the challenges for the European Union and therefore I believe that we shouldn’t act unilaterally, that we shouldn’t act without coordination and that we shouldn’t act in a way that burdens third parties involved,” Merkel said.

The situation couldn’t have possibly gotten worse for the German Chancellor who expected a bilateral resolution to the dispute by the end of the month, when coalition partners CSU gave Monday as the deadline for a comprehensive solution to the crisis.

The hardline interior ministers of Austria, Germany and Italy have formed an “axis of the willing” to combat illegal immigration, Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz said Wednesday, escalating a Europe-wide row over the issue. The announcement by Kurz in Berlin after talks with German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer marks a shot across the bow at Chancellor Angela Merkel, who is trying to pull together a deal for EU cooperation on placing asylum seekers. Seehofer – who is locked in an open migration feud with Merkel that is threatening the stability of her coalition government – said that he and his far-right Austrian and Italian counterparts, Herbert Kickl and Matteo Salvini, had formed their alliance this week. 
 
Unchecked refugee intake has severely impacted everyday life in most parts of Europe, with rape gangs and urban crime on a record high. The media, which is Left leaning in most European nations, has either deliberately hidden the identities of immigrants involved in heinous crimes, or barely covered those stories at all to avoid stoking anti-immigration sentiments. Irrespective, Alternative For Deutschland or the AfD, a Far Right anti immigration party made massive gains in the last elections, becoming the third largest party with 92 seats in the Bundestag.
 
Emmanuel Macron, who is popularly known for his Centrist approach rejected the offer of a partnership with the interior minister of of Italy, Germany and Austria to join the ‘Axis of the Willing’ to fight illegal immigration.  However, he did add that the current mechanism for refugee intake is well outdated and needs a serious introspection and if required, a paradigm shift in the intake and identification procedure.
 
Nonetheless, the German government is on the brink of collapse if Angela Merkel is unwilling to back down from her stance that Germany will continue to take in refugees. Fresh snap elections would most likely mean a surge in votes for the Far Right AfD, which will bring about a radical shift in German politics and policy making. With Italy set to be the next in line to leave the European Union, the move by Angela Merkel is simply her clutching at straws, trying to prevent the further deterioration of an already fractured and impractical coming together of nations in the form of the European Union. A loss for Merkel at this point would mean a victory for sovereignty and self governance, as a nation has a right to frame its own laws and policies regarding something as controversial as immigration.