German Chancellor Angela Merkel, who was elected yesterday for her fourth term, commented on the rise of the Alternative for Germany (AfD). Merkel clarified that while the fact that a far-right wing party will enter the German parliament for the first time since the Second World War is concerning, the AfD will not influence her immigration policy.
Merkel Photo Credit: Reuters/Channel 2 News
On Monday, German Chancellor Angela Merkel held a press conference during which she commented on the election results that awarded her a fourth term but also opened the Bundestag’s door to the Alternative for Germany (AfD), a far-right wing party.
“There are many problems and that could be why we saw a protest vote,” Merkel said regarding the results. “When we sort out the problems, we will see the voters return to the party [the Christian Democratic Union].”
When asked about one of the main topics of the election campaign, Merkel said: “I don’t think that Germany’s immigration policy should be changed. There are disagreements between the parties regarding the topic and we are discussing them but there won’t be an AfD influence on this policy.”
“We’ve heard attacks from the right-wing and the left-wing,” she said regarding the criticism toward her open-door refugee policy. “It was a tough campaign. I was prepared for these attacks. Now, we have a mandate to continue our policy. We are the strongest power in Germany and my commitment is to my voters. I believe that the decisions I’m responsible for as chancellor are the right decisions. I think that the agreement with Turkey is right and that the immigration policy is right.”
“Many problems regarding immigration have still not been resolved and this is the reason a party like AfD succeeded in this election,” she added. “I understand from the election results that the people in east Germany are worried about the globalization process and concerned that migrants are taking jobs and places of work. We will deal with these problems.”
“We will face a lot of challenges on the way but the nation gave us a mandate in order to deal with them,” Merkel concluded.