Angela Merkel seeks emergency talks with EU leaders on immigration

If  Angela Merkel’s (pictured) Coalition partners carry through on their threat to deport immigrants, it would deal a hammer blow to  her leadership that could see her 13-year rule of Germany come to an abrupt end

Angela Merkel is seeking emergency talks with EU leaders as her Government is teetering on the verge of collapse in a row about immigration.

Her Coalition partners the Christian Social Union (CSU) are threatening to defy the German Chancellor and unilaterally expel migrants who have been registered in other European countries from the country tomorrow.

The move would deal a hammer blow to Mrs Merkel’s leadership that could see her  13-year rule of Germany come to an abrupt end.

With Berlin in the grip of crisis, Mrs Merkel is urgently trying to hold talks with other major European powers to try to broker a deal.

The German leader wants European powers to work together to try to tackle the migrant crisis which has stoked massive hostility among many countries.

But Mrs Merkel is facing major opposition from within her own Government ranks from ministers furious at her open door policy for the wave of migrants who landed in Europe in 2015.

German Government spokesman Steffen Seibert said on Twitter: ‘Of course the German government is having talks in this regard with several member states and

EU states are deeply divided on how to deal with large numbers of people fleeing conflict, especially from the Middle East. 

The row boiled over this week when a boat carrying Libyan migrants  rescued at sea was refused permission to dock on either Italy or Malta.

As the two states refused to help, some 630 desperate migrants were left terrified and in desperate need of medical attention off the coast of Italy.

They cried tears of joy as they were finally allowed in dry land in Spain today after nine-harrowing days at sea. 

But the heartbreaking case highlights the deep divisions on immigration which commentators warn could tear the EU apart.

Mrs Merkel is at loggerheads with her conservative Bavarian allies, the Christian Social Union (CSU), who share power with her Christian Democrats (CDU) and the Social Democrats in a loveless coalition.

The NGO 'SOS Mediterranee' Aquarius ship is pictured coming into dock at the Spanish port of Valenica this morning. It was the second of three boats that finally arrived in Spain today after nine days at sea  

The NGO ‘SOS Mediterranee’ Aquarius ship is pictured coming into dock at the Spanish port of Valenica this morning. It was the second of three boats that finally arrived in Spain today after nine days at sea  

In an extraordinary move, the CSU – facing a tough regional election in October – has threatened to defy her and on Monday go ahead with plans for Germany to send back migrants already registered in other EU states.

If they go ahead with their threat, it would perhaps morally undermine Mrs Merkel’s authority and be a blow to the EU’s Schengen open-border system.

Such a direct challenge to Merkel would force her to fire Interior Minister Horst Seehofer – a vocal critic of her open door immigration policy and a thorn in her side.

There is even talk that the 70-year-old conservative parliamentary alliance between the CDU and CSU could collapse. 

Mr Seehofer told Bild am Sonntag newspaper: ‘No one in the CSU has an interest in bringing down the chancellor, to break up the CDU/CSU parliamentary alliance or to blow up the coalition.

‘We want a solution for sending back refugees at our borders,’ he said.

While two other leading CSU members said they wanted to start implementing the policy quickly.

Mrs Merkel has asked the CSU to give her two weeks to come up with bilateral deals with some countries, such as Italy and Greece, similar to one agreed between Turkey and the EU in 2016.