‘Destiny Day’ for Merkel as Allies Set to Issue Migration Ultimatum

Mrs Merkel has asked the CSU to give her two weeks to come up with bilateral deals with some countries, such as Italy and Greece, similar to one agreed between Turkey and the European Union in 2016.

The policy would undermine Mrs Merkel's authority after she operated an open-door approach in 2015 which led to thousands of migrants entering Germany after first coming to the European Union through another country. "These are all questions that we will discuss in the coming months and where we want to work very closely together", Merkel said.

German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer has backed down from a threat to bypass Chancellor Angela Merkel in a disagreement over immigration policy, bringing reprieve to Merkel's biggest political crisis to date.

"But 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.

Seehofer's "migration master plan", which Merkel last week refused to endorse, would see asylum seekers arriving at Germany's borders turned away if they have no identification papers, have already had an asylum claim rejected in Germany, or are already registered in another country in the EU - proposals that rights group say contravene European and global agreements.

More than 1.6 million migrants, mostly Muslims fleeing wars in the Middle East, have arrived in Germany since 2014.

The chancellor and her Christian Democrats pledged in the agreement defining the terms of their government that 2015 would remain an exception that was not to be repeated. The CSU is determined to show that it's tough on migration as it faces a challenging October state election in Bavaria, and argues that that is the best way to cut support for the far-right Alternative for Germany.

Seehofer, whose party is more socially conservative than Merkel's, has always been a critic of the chancellor's immigration policies, particularly her decision to open Germany's borders at the height of the refugee crisis in 2015. But she also restated her interest in finding a solution "in good cooperation with our European neighbors".

That hope, however, is running up against an "axis of the willing" to combat immigration announced last week by Italy's new far-right interior minister and his German and Austrian counterparts.

More news: Lukaku On The Double As Belgium Blank Panama At Russia 2018

Seehofer's party met in Munich to affirm its backing for his so-called migration masterplan comprising 63 measures, the most contentious of which is to start turning migrants away at the border.

Merkel said Monday that she agreed with 62 of the 63 proposals in the plan, which has not yet been published in full. A quota system, agreed two years ago, would have distributed migrants from these states to other European Union countries.

Merkel has been asking her coalition to delay addressing the question until European Union leaders convene in Brussels to discuss immigration and other issues affecting the 28 members of the bloc on June 28 and 29.

But the migration issue has stymied the partners for years, and the recent rise of euroskeptic governments has not made the efforts easier.

"We will not accept abandoning the Schengen system on the borders with Belgium, the Netherlands, France and Luxembourg".

"A European solution is the only acceptable way".

"Germany also has a head of government", he said of Merkel, saying it was she who was "responsible before her people and her parliament".

Handelsblatt daily also reported the two-week delay.

That process begins on Monday, with the visit to Germany of Italy's new prime minister Giuseppe Conte.

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