16:37 GMT02 December 2020
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    A number of countries have backed out of signing a United Nations agreement on migration. Now discontent is brooding within Germany's largest political party, the Christian Democratic Union. Some lawmakers criticize the pact, which is to be signed in December, as it fails to differentiate between refugees and economic immigrants.

    A number of CDU lawmakers plan to make a stand against the UN migration pact during the meeting of the party group in the Bundestag, Germany's parliament, as Die Welt reports. The newly-appointed CDU group leader Ralph Brinkhaus had put the topic on the agenda after criticism within the party had increased. The coup is led by CDU’s Marian Wendt, who deals with interior affairs.

    “It goes without saying that the internationally acknowledged way to deal with global migration is a German key interest. Nevertheless, I would oppose signing the global migration pact in its current form together with several colleagues of mine… The lack of distinction between forced and labor migration is another disadvantage of the pact,” Wendt told the outlet, saying that even though the document is not legally binding, it raises too many questions.

    He stated that the debates are needed in order to prevent right-wing politicians from shaping the discussion with “false allegations.” Another prominent CDU figure, Saxony's Minister President Michael Kretschmer accused the Federal Government of communication failure.

    READ MORE: EU States Fail to Agree on 'Return Centers' Pushed by Austria to Stem Migration

    The country’s Health Minister Jens Spahn, who seeks to replace Angela Merkel as the CDU's leader following her upcoming departure, demanded that the agreement should be examined carefully.

    "It is important that Germany should retain its sovereignty to control and limit migration," Spahn said in his interview with Die Welt am Sonntag, pointing out that the debates on the migration pact are not resolved within the CDU parliamentary group. He stated that it is not just recipient countries, but also the countries of origin, whose responsibility should remain in focus.

    The first round of debates on the global pact, induced by the Alternative for Germany party, is scheduled for November 8.

    The Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration is set to be formally adopted in the Moroccan city of Marrakesh during an intergovernmental conference scheduled for December 10-11. The final draft of this non-binding agreement was published on July 11. The US was the first country which refused to approve it, and then Australia backed out. In Europe, Hungary and recently Austria have announced that they would not sign the UN migration pact.

    While refugee migration has been addressed by the Geneva Convention on refugees, the newly-forged UN agreement would become the first to address the general migration of people between countries. Among other points, the pact contains passages designed to address the status of illegal immigrants in a way that would allow them to register as living in a host country, for instance, the problem of issuing residence permits to rejected asylum seekers.

    Since 2015, Europe has been facing a migration crisis, with scores of refugees arriving from conflict-torn countries. In recent months, the EU leaders have repeatedly expressed their willingness to pay more attention to cooperating with the migrants' countries of origin and to transit countries.


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    refugee, lawmaker, migration, Christian Democratic Union/Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU), Jens Spahn, Angela Merkel, Germany
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