"Nothing happens to the countries that refuse. Migrants just go through them. I think we must talk about ways to put pressure on them. These are often the countries that receive a lot of structural funds from the EU," de Maiziere said Tuesday when speaking on the German television channel ZDF.
The minister said this move could help maintain unity across the European Union on the issue of migration.
Monday’s emergency meeting of EU interior ministers failed to reach a unanimous agreement on the Commission’s proposal to relocate 120,000 mostly Syrian refugees throughout the European Union, with several Eastern European countries refusing the mandatory quotas.
Germany previously opened its borders to tens of thousands of refugees stranded in Hungary but later said its capacity to accommodate newcomers was stretched to its limit. On Sunday, Berlin tightened border controls with Austria.