German ‘Grand Coalition’ Declares Migrant Crisis ‘Over’, Will Let in 220,000 Migrants Per Year

Steffi Loos/Getty Images

The expected ‘Grand Coalition’ of German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Christian Democrats (CDU) and Martin Schulz’s Social Democrats (SPD) have declared the migrant crisis to be “over” and agreed to let in up to 220,000 migrants each year.

The two parties have agreed to allow between 180,000 to 220,000 migrants per year, claiming their plans will control migration in such a way that “a situation like 2015 is not repeated”, Die Welt reports.

Around 1,000 migrants will be allowed into Germany per month as part of the family reunification programme thanks to lobbying by Schulz — a former President of the European Parliament — whose party does not support the current suspension of family reunifications.

Merkel has agreed to fresh legislation which will extend the suspension only until the new proposal can be implemented.

A draft paper of the coalition arrangements has been released, which states: “we want to fight the causes of flight, not the refugees.”

The paper describes a commitment to a “restrictive arms export policy” as well as humanitarian missions and international police missions.

Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz has also expressed a desire to stop mass migration by working with countries of origin and creating safe zones within troubled areas, although he appears less keen on continuing to admit large numbers of migrants than Merkel and Schulz.

One of the largest problems the German government has had is with deciding which countries are “safe” to deport migrants back to. The new agreement would see any country which has a less than five percent asylum approval rate be automatically considered safe.

The new coalition deal, which will now be reviewed by SPD members, will see the anti-mass migration Alternative for Germany (AfD) emerge as the official opposition in the German parliament, given their third-place finish in the national elections last September.

AfD group leaders Alice Weidel and Alexander Gauland have already derided the coalition deal talks, calling them “grotesque and implausible”, and saying that the paper “consists only of vague declarations of intent and implausible announcements.”

Despite the good news for Chancellor Merkel, who will likely continue on as German leader, many voters feel she is past her prime, with polls showing that a majority of Germans want her out of office before the next election.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at) 



Please let us know if you're having issues with commenting.