Merkel under pressure within Germany amid refugee crisis

Berlin, Oct 10 (IANS) German Chancellor Angela Merkel may need to brace for a constitutional challenge as the Bavaria state threatened to take legal steps with regard to the refugee crisis after a meeting of the cabinet.

“If the federal government does not take effective measures to limit the influx of asylum seekers, Bavaria reserves the right to use legal procedures at Germany’s supreme court,” Xinhua quoted Bavarian state government as saying in a statement on Friday.

The Bavarian government demanded to reject refugees directly at the German border, if the other EU states failed to meet their commitments and to take over the incoming refugees.

Also on Friday, Germany’s anti-euro party, the Alternative for Germany, railed against the refugee policy of Germany and announced to make a criminal complaint against the chancellor in the context of asylum policy.

Concerning the decision of the government at the beginning of September, allowing thousands of refugees who were stranded in Hungary to travel to Germany, deputy party leader Alexander Gauland said: “Mrs. Merkel has acted as a smuggler”.

Meanwhile, German Vice-Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier called for a limitation of immigration in Germany.

Gabriel and Steinmeier set a numerical limit on the number of refugees for the first time, in contrast to Merkel, who has always said “the right of asylum for politically persecuted knows no limit”.

With refugee numbers rising, the government comes under increasing pressure.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel was probably never criticised for her decidedly positive attitude in the immigration debate to such an extent as currently, according to German media.

After more than 200,000 asylum seekers came to Germany in a month in September, the refugee influx is causing anxiety. Several public opinion polls showed recently that Merkel has lost popularity.

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