February 18, 2019

Merkel Warns New Auto Tariffs Could Start A Trade War

08 July 2018, 05:32 | Devin Moran

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Merkel on Trump tariffs 'It takes two' to prevent a trade war

"If this is agreed in Berlin, we will be forced to take action to prevent harm to Austria and its people", Sebastian Kurz, the Austrian chancellor said.

Austria had feared that Germany was exporting these asylum claimants, prompting Kurz to warn that he could introduce controls along the southern border.

Annual migrant arrivals peaked in 2015 at over one million people, many of them fleeing Syria's war and therefore entitled to asylum, while others were trying to escape poverty.

Austria has become an enthusiastic supporter of a long-standing effort by the European commission to create a European border and coastguard agency, in contrast to the policy of previous Austrian governments.

In a speech to German lawmakers, Horst Seehofer, leader of the Bavaria-based Christian Social Union (CSU), defended the plan to hold migrants seeking to enter Germany from Austria in transit centres.

"Stocks are higher as improved political relations in Germany and constructive trade comments from China have lifted investor sentiment", David Madden, market analyst at CMC Markets UK, said, adding that the positive mood might not last. Spiegel said she now appeared to recognize that European Union hardliners could no longer be ignored or stonewalled.

The decision of Merkel in 2015 to open the German border for those leaving the conflict zone in the middle East, was due mainly to the refusal of the Orban to offer them refuge and blocking the so-called Balkan route into the EU.

At the time, Orban railed against Merkel's "moral imperialism", while the chancellor, who grew up in communist East Germany, said she had seen enough walls in Europe for a lifetime.

Since then, far-right parties are sharing power in key countries such as Italy and Austria while the anti-immigration Alternative for Germany party won almost 100 seats in the Bundestag lower house.

Asked by ARD television Wednesday whether she has now become a "sealing-off chancellor", Merkel replied: "No. If Europe with its values and wants to continue to play a role in the world, then she can't just turn away from difficulties and suffering", she said.

"We feel hurt that we are accused by Germany of lack of solidarity", said Orban, adding that "we protect our border with 8,000 armed soldiers for 24 hours". And I always told myself, yes, it is important to stick to these principles. "We are fighting for a European solution".

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