Germany coalition partners appeared to stalled over immigration policy issue

Leader of the Christian Democratic Union (CDU) Angela Merkel arrives at the Baden-Wuerttemberg State Representation office for exploratory talks about forming a new coalition government in Berlin, Germany, November 19, 2017. REUTERS/Axel Schmidt

Vastavam web: Germany’s would-be coalition partners appeared to be stalled over the thorny issue of immigration policy on Sunday despite inching closer to agreement on other major sticking points including climate policy.An awkward alliance with the pro-business Free Democrats and the Greens would allow Chancellor Angela Merkel to govern for a fourth term after her conservatives lost votes in September’s election to the far right.

A self-imposed deadline of Thursday for wrapping up exploratory talks passed without agreement, but negotiators said the Greens welcomed a Sunday offer to boost wind generation and shutter 7 gigawatts of dirty coal generation capacity.“(Parties) cannot go in with maximal demands,” said Greens co-leader Cem Ozdemir. “They have to be prepared, out of responsibility, or call it patriotism, to move – and we have done that in every area, right up to the pain threshold.”

The left-leaning Greens have opposed a cap, but appeared willing to compromise in a document seen by Reuters late on Saturday, in which they said that the proposed limit had only been exceeded five times in the past 25 years.

Failure to reach a deal could lead to new elections, something all the parties are anxious to avoid as they fear this could lead to the far-right Alternative for Germany (AfD) making further gains after surging into parliament in September.The CSU is allied to Merkel’s Christian Democrats. It has been in power for 60 years in the south-eastern state of Bavaria, which was the main entry point for the million mainly Middle Eastern refugees that flooded into Germany in 2015, upending Germany’s demographic landscape overnight.