21:10 GMT +311 December 2019
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    A supporter of the anti-immigration right-wing movement PEGIDA (Patriotic Europeans Against the Islamisation of the West) holds up a sticker for a photo during a demonstration rally in Cologne, Germany January 9, 2016. The sticker reads, Merkel must go!

    Survey Reveals 40 Percent of Germans Want Merkel to Resign Over Migrants

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    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)

    Forty percent of Germans are not satisfied with the country’s migrant policy and want Chancellor Angela Merkel to resign, a poll showed on Friday.

    Merkel, who enjoyed high popularity ratings early last year, has grown increasingly isolated in recent months and public pressure has skyrocketed for her to abandon the open-door policy toward refugees coming to the country from the Middle East and Africa.

    On Tuesday, Merkel’s conservatives and their Social Democrat (SPD) coalition partners agreed to tighten asylum rules, reaching a compromise on how to stem the refugee influx, Deutsche Welle reported.

    The Insa poll for Focus magazine surveyed 2,047 German citizens on January 22-25. However, 45.2 percent said Merkel’s refugee policy was not a reason for her to leave office. Another poll released in Friday showed support for Merkel’s bloc at 37 percent, five percent down against September 2014.

    Merkel has come under harsh criticism for her welcoming policy for refugees amid an unprecedented migrant crisis in Europe, considered the worst since the World War II era. The chancellor has also faced criticism from other EU countries, including from Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi.

    However, Merkel has claimed the country would able to deal with the growing number of refuges, for many of whom Germany is the most desirable destination in Europe. In 2015, 1.1 million refugees crossed the German borders, and potentially more may come in 2016.

    One of the factors probably contributing to Merkel’s falling popularity is the recent wave of sexual harassment attacks against women by refugees across Germany.

    The first city to report about mass sexual harassment was Cologne, where according eyewitnesses, men of "Arab or North African" origin were harassing and assaulting women in the city center on New Year’s Eve. Later, similar cases have been reported in other German cities, including Berlin, Frankfurt and Stuttgart.

    On Tuesday, Merkel’s Bavarian allies sent a letter threatening to take the chancellor to the Constitutional Court if the government fails to stem the migrant influx.

    Last week, a group of German lawyers filed a lawsuit against the Merkel-led migrant policy to the Federal Constitutional Court in Karlsruhe. In a statement six lawyers indicated a violation of their voting rights and a violation of the right to participate in the "democratic process of decision making," according to Der Spiegel. They required from the court to rule that Merkel’s decision on September 4, 2015 to open borders to refugees contradicts with the basic laws of the country.

    Major Migrant Crisis in Europe (1819)


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    poll, migrant crisis, Angela Merkel, Germany
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