German Chancellor Angela Merkel hangs onto power after last-minute deal over immigration

German Chancellor Angela Merkel hangs onto power after last-minute deal over immigration

The compromise deal meant that Mr Seehofer was able to hail tighter immigration controls, while Mrs Merkel was able to say that Germany adhered to European Union rules and upheld freedom of movement within the bloc.

Taking aim at Trump over his complaint that the European Union, and in particular economic powerhouse Germany, is running a massive trade surplus against the US, Merkel said that his calculation is skewed as it is based only on goods, not services.

Some Social Democrats accuse the CSU of wanting to appear tough on immigration before a regional election in Bavaria in October where the conservatives are expected to lose voters to the anti-immigrant party Alternative for Germany.

According to summit conclusions, European Union member states will, on a voluntary basis, set up so-called "controlled centers" to host and transfer migrants that landed on European Union shores.

Despite the drama over Mr. Seehofer's resignation threat on Sunday, several political analysts said the most likely outcome was for both parties to walk back and find a last-minute compromise.

Merkel insisted the EU-wide deal reached on Friday was a victory, but Seehofer's party was not so sure.

However, according to das Bild, Seehofer called the meeting on Saturday evening an "ineffective conversation".

A almost eight-hour meeting of the CSU in Munich was put on hold after the party's leader, Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, made his offer to resign both from Merkel's Cabinet and as head of the CSU.

If the CSU had withdrawn its support for Merkel's coalition, she would be left without a majority in the German parliament, possibly prompting fresh elections.

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"I think the way this debate is being conducted is hurting Germany's image and above all that of the German government", he said.

Meanwhile, the SPD said they would be meeting to discuss whether the compromise between the two conservative parties was acceptable to them.

Meanwhile Hungary's anti-migrant Prime Minister Viktor Orban, said Budapest was open for talks with Germany if Berlin managed to strike a migration deal with neighbouring Austria, whose Chancellor Sebastian Kurz is, like Orban, an immigration hardliner.

Under the deal, Germany will set up transit centres on its border with Austria where asylum seekers will be held while their cases are decided.

"It is worthwhile to prevent this conflict from becoming a real war", she said, adding however that this "would require both sides" to take steps. Its government, which on Tuesday expressed its scepticism about the transit zones, has yet to agree to backing them, not least because this would require Vienna agreeing to take back refugees who had registered in Austria.

The latest flare-up was triggered when Seehofer announced a 63-point "migration master plan" last month, which Merkel refused to endorse due to the proposal to reject asylum seekers already registered elsewhere.

The idea of setting up centres at the border with Austria to process migrants is not new.

Germany recorded just 18,349 people this year who would be eligible for deportation to other European Union states under the proposed scheme.