Declining Popularity Isn’t Stopping Merkel From Striking Refugee Deal with Italy

By Stephen Fuchs on Email @StephenWFuchs

German Chancellor Angela Merkel this week has entered into a new deal with Italy that will see the country begin offloading its many refugees to the German nation starting in September, in a move that shows that she is holding firm to her open door policy despite her falling popularity.

This move is seen to be a revival of last year’s EU relocation program that was to relocate at least 40,000 migrants to stronger European nations. The plan was failure, but with Italy being on the verge of a financial collapse, the nation is pushing to offload the economic burden onto the stronger Germany.

Italy’s Interior Minister Angelino Alfano told la Repubblica TV that he hopes this deal with Germany will motivate other countries to do the same by opening their borders to the refugees.

“People should remember that in 2015 Germany accepted a million refugees, so if in addition to those already taken, Germany also takes part of ours, it means that other European countries can also do it,” Alfano told the local network.

By agreeing to this new plan, Merkel will surely face some harsh criticism back home. Is there a bigger picture that she sees but is completely missed by the public? As Germany enters into a heated election season, Merkel will need to show some positive results coming from the controversial open door policy if she has hopes for another term.

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Sources: Reuters, Express

Photo: Susanne Nilsson [Flickr]

Stephen Fuchs
Stephen founded German Pulse and LGBT Germany out of a passion to introduce Americans to a Germany that goes beyond beer and polka (although with enough beer he has been known to polka it up a bit). He's a coffee addict, lover of wine and good times, a hit in the kitchen and editor of TV commercials. You can follow him on Twitter (@StephenWFuchs) to find out a lot more.
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