Merkel faces 2-week ultimatum to secure asylum deal

Merkel's refugee policy has led to more than 1.6 million migrants arriving in Germany in the last three years

Germany's Interior Minister Horst Seehofer said on Sunday a row between his Bavarians and Chancellor Angela Merkel is serious but can be overcome, a signal that he may compromise to avoid a full-blown German coalition crisis.

President Emmanuel Macron and Chancellor Angela Merkel met on June 19 in Meseberg, near Berlin.

The special summit will most likely take place before the summer European Union summit set to start on June 28, Xinhua said quoting the report.

Daily newspaper Bild reported the CSU would give Merkel two weeks until the EU summit to get a European solution before defying her and enforcing Seehofer's plan.

Some political analysts have speculated that the CSU manufactured the showdown with Merkel in an attempt to mobilize right-wing voters ahead of critical Bavarian state elections in October.

Over the past week, a conflict between Interior Minister Horst Seehofer and Merkel over migrant policy has escalated into a threat to her government.

A government spokesman said Merkel was also seeking talks with some European Union members before the leaders summit but denied a Bild report that she was trying to set up a special summit.

CSU expects that at the next European Union summit in June, Merkel will be able to reach a compromise with other countries on the issue of countering the influx of illegal immigrants.

"We do not really have a handle on this whole issue of migration", Seehofer told reporters in Munich as Merkel spoke in Berlin. And then: "We don't want what is happening with immigration in Europe to happen with us!".

It wasn't immediately clear what she might offer other countries in talks.

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On migration, Merkel's insistence on finding common European solutions to reducing migrant numbers and other issues has met stiff resistance in her own conservative bloc, leading to a showdown over the last week with her interior minister who has insisted some categories of migrants should be turned away at Germany's borders.

Macron echoed her words, saying that "a European answer" is needed to the challenges that migration poses.

More than 2,300 children have been taken from their parents since early May, a practice loudly decried by rights groups and United States politicians from both main parties. "But we stand by our position that, if this does not succeed, turning people back immediately at the border must be possible".

"The Italian borders are European borders", he said.

A populist-far right government in place in Italy, as well as the conservative-far right in power in neighbouring Austria, have also taken an uncompromising stance on immigration.

The spat over immigration has laid bare the deep tensions in a fractious German government that took office only in March, after almost six months of postelection haggling, and exposed the limits of Merkel's authority. The two parties govern with the center-left Social Democrats.

Most Germans support the moves according to opinion polls, while critics say Merkel's liberal migrant policies have bolstered far-right and populist parties at home and overseas.

Millions of refugees have traversed the Mediterranean Sea in the last few years to apply for asylum in the EU.

The office said 728,470 application requests were made for worldwide protection in 2017, compared to nearly 1.3 million applications the previous year.

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