04:08 GMT +308 December 2019
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    Angela Merkel is seen on a video screen as Horst Seehofer makes a speech at the CDU party congress in Karlsruhe, Germany in this December 15, 2015 file picture

    Merkel, Allies Face Election 'Flop' Over Mishandling of Migrants

    © REUTERS / Kai Pfaffenbach
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    The German government's inability to resolve the current migration crisis is likely to have serious repercussions during the 2017 elections in Germany, according to Bavaria's Prime Minister Horst Seehofer.

    The magazine Der Spiegel quoted Horst Seehofer, Bavaria's Prime Minister and head of the Christian Social Union (CSU), as saying that the CSU will face a total flop in the 2017 elections if the ongoing migration crisis is not solved.

    His remarks came amid a widening split over refugee quotas between Chancellor Angela Merkel and the Bavaria-based CSU, a sister party to her Christian Democratic Union (CDU).

    A bus (R) with refugees from the Bavarian town of Landshut is pictured after its arrival to the Chancellery building in Berlin, Germany, January 14, 2016
    © REUTERS / Fabrizio Bensch
    A bus (R) with refugees from the Bavarian town of Landshut is pictured after its arrival to the Chancellery building in Berlin, Germany, January 14, 2016

    Merkel has repeatedly opposed such restrictions, but she remains under increasing pressure from her Bavarian allies to toughen her stance.

    Seehofer has, meanwhile, warned of "dramatic repercussions" related to integration, security and the government's functionality in the event that the CSU's demands for refugee admissions caps are not met.

    Right now, Merkel faces a spate of challenges from the CSU and right-wing CDU MPs, who are calling for further restrictions on refugees, including the right of refugees to bring in family members. Merkel has more than once made it plain that she will not back such measures, and the center-left Social Democratic Party (SPD), the third coalition government partner, is opposed to them as well.

    Earlier this month, Merkel was once again forced to toughen her stand on refugees after the total number of complaints over sex attacks in Cologne on New Year's Eve — involving men of Arab or North African appearance — reached 379, according to police.

    Merkel was harshly criticized both at home and abroad over her 'open door' policy on refugees, which saw over a million migrants — mainly from Syria, Afghanistan and Iraq — cross into Germany last year alone.

    Europe is currently facing its biggest crisis since the formation of the EU as it struggles to cope with the biggest mass movement of people since the Second World War.


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    quotas, crisis, government, elections, refugees, restrictions, migration, Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU), Germany
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