Crisis averted? Minister says migrant row with Merkel can be overcome

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a news conference with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg after a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin Friday

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a news conference with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg after a meeting at the chancellery in Berlin Friday

"If we want to defend our liberal democracy, we need more Europe, not less".

Seehofer threatened Monday to turn back migrants if the German leader doesn't secure a deal within two weeks.

Earlier this month, Merkel made some concessions, agreeing to support Macron's call for an investment fund to help poorer European countries catch up in the areas of science, technology and innovation.

Merkel is adamant that a European solution is needed and is seeking bilateral deals with some partners, such as Italy and Greece, similar to one agreed between Turkey and the EU in 2016. Seehofer - then the governor of Bavaria, where most migrants first entered Germany - became a leading critic of her welcoming approach.

In an unprecedented split between the CDU and CSU, Seehofer has openly defied Merkel with a demand to allow border police to turn back migrants who lack valid identity papers or are already registered in another European Union country.

However, "the European project is at risk", and "we have a particular responsibility", she said.

Seehofer has vowed to refuse entry to undocumented migrants and those who have already registered in another European Union member country, part of what the Bavarian conservatives are calling an "asylum reversal".

Seibert declined to elaborate ahead of the meeting, which will be preceded by statements from the leaders.

White House Deputy Press Secretary Hogan Gidley echoed the president's argument in an interview with FOX Monday, contrasting the permanent separation caused when a loved one is killed to the "temporary separation of families".

While she has rejected unilateral action to turn back some migrants at the German border, Merkel has raised the possibility of forging agreements between two or more countries if an EU-wide asylum deal can't be reached.

Despite increased political pressure from Berlin and Rome, talks on reforming the bloc's internal asylum rules remain stuck with southern and wealthy central states demanding that all European Union members host some of the new arrivals.

In an interesting fact, recent data released by German Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, the man who is actually the leader of the immigration-skeptical members of Merkel's cabinet, shows that crime in Germany has fallen to it's lowest rate since 1992. Although Trump has claimed that migrants cause crime in Europe, 2016 statistics from Germany revealed that there were almost 1,000 crimes targeting migrants at asylum and refugee centers.

If Seehofer were to defy her and go ahead with his plans on Monday, Merkel would nearly certainly be forced to fire him.

Merkel now faces the challenge of persuading European Union governments to sign up to a common plan on migrants.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who Trump met with last week at the G7 summit, has faced political headwinds in the country since she implemented an open-door policy in 2015 in an effort to lead the way in response to the refugee crisis.

Armin Laschet, a senior Christian Democrat, urged his party to end the dispute with the CSU quickly, saying it had strengthened extreme groups.

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