Vote won’t Change Migrant Policy: Germany

German Chancellor Angela Merkel gestures during a new year press conference in Berlin 15 January 2008. German Chancellor Angela Merkel voiced strong backing for the European Central Bank (ECB), rejecting a French call for a meeting of political leaders to mull monetary matters. Merkel also defended her China policy amid a major rift brought on by her meeting last year with the Dalai Lama, whom Beijing brands a dangerous separatist.  AFP PHOTO JOHN MACDOUGALL GERMANY-POLITICS-MERKEL

PARIS – Germany’s vice chancellor is making clear that likely gains for a nationalist party in state elections on Sunday won’t change his government’s stance on migrants.
The Alternative for Germany, or AfD, party is expected to win seats in three more German state legislatures in the election amid unease over Chancellor Angela Merkel’s welcome last year for large numbers of refugees and her insistence on pursuing a Europe-wide solution to the migrant crisis.
Vice Chancellor Sigmar Gabriel said after meeting fellow center-left European leaders in Paris on Saturday that a large majority of voters will choose “democratic parties” and that “we shouldn’t start to panic.”
He added: “There is a clear position that we stand by: humanity and solidarity. We will not change our position now because of 10 percent right-wing radicals.”
He called for a large turnout in the vote. -AP

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