But this can hardly be the case: the United Nations' intention to conclude such an agreement has been known since 2016. The concrete negotiations on the document that anyone can read online have been going on for more than a year. The Bundestag was kept informed – in this election period alone, the Federal Government answered three parliamentary questions. In addition, there was a briefing on an international parliamentary assembly in Geneva, to which German MPs arrived – also there, the UN agreement was an issue.
It can not therefore be due to the lack of transparency that some CDU domestic politicians are now so passionately interested in a legally non-binding agreement in which there is little that goes beyond the previous legal situation in Germany. Rather, another fact is striking: The agreement is considered "controversial" only since the AfD, right-wing populist blogs and the Identitarian Movement – for which the constitutional protection sees "actual evidence of a right-wing extremist movement" – with false information humor against it.
CDU conservative calls not only debate on pact, but "asylum turn"
The transparent attempt to swim along this wave of sentiment does not throw a good light on members of a bourgeois party. Because it is no longer about criticism on the factual level, it is clear, if one looks at the speeches by Alexander Mitsch, who is chairman of the parliamentary group "WerteUnion". On twitter he wrote, the members (the CDU) expected "now in particular an asylum shift and clear edge to the migration pact".
In addition, he threatened indirectly, conservative CDU members would vote in the current election campaign for the party presidency only one candidate, who sets himself apart from the migration pact (Mitsch literally on Twitter: "The positions of the candidates for migration and the migration pact will be the decisive criterion for many in the CDU for their election decision for the federal presidency.") This makes it clear: As so often in the case of migration and refugees, some parliamentarians try a substantive topic on the vote of no confidence to make the refugee policy of the Federal Chancellor.
Spahn's remarks were more subtle
In any case, the criticism voiced so far by the CDU has little to do with the content of the migration agreement. Thus, the deputy Marian Wendt had said to the "world" that the agreement does not distinguish sufficiently between flight and labor migration. However, the text makes a very clear distinction between refugees claiming asylum and other migrants.
Federal Health Minister Jens Spahn said in an interview with Welt am Sonntag that it was important "that Germany retains its sovereignty to control and limit migration". This is comparatively subtle, but nevertheless gives the impression that the Migration Pact calls Germany's sovereignty into migration policy into question. However, this is not the case: the document states on several occasions that the states in their territory can regulate migration on their own – as it is now done. Spahn knows that, of course. But with his ambiguous wording, he leaves himself a back door to clearer criticism of the agreement.
Of course, it is not new that policy is hijacked by power politics and topics are suddenly charged. Even Union politicians should still ask themselves whether controlling migration is not too important a topic to sacrifice for such games. This is not only a question of political decency, it is also about Germany's reputation in the international arena: how would it stand the federal government, if they would put an agreed agreement back into question, because a right-wing populist false information wave makes it seem opportune ?
Applause comes from an Austrian right-wing extremist – nobody can do that
Quite apart from the fact that it should be daunting on Democrats, who are the people who are currently making the most of the mood against the migration agreement. In addition to the AfD, these are currently mainly the Austrian right-wing extremist identities. One of its leading figures, Martin Sellner, thanked the Austrian government for its withdrawal from the migration pact on Monday in a speech now available on YouTube. He was "delightfully touched" that the "resistance" is working, Sellner told his followers.
He spoke explicitly also the speech of Jens Spahn of the weekend and the other criticism from the Union and called the alleged "resistance" against Angela Merkel an "inconceivable turn". That a well-known right-wing extremist cheers over the German debate before its followers, should give all democratic politicians in this country to think.
Will the next Groko dispute follow?
On Tuesday it became clear that the debate on the Migration Pact also has what it takes to push a new wedge between the Groko partners. CSU state party chief Alexander Dobrindt warned against a "very diffuse discussion" about the pact in the social media. Although Dobrindt emphasized that Germany would not be given new responsibilities internationally through the agreement. However, in the same breath he accused Foreign Minister Heiko Maas (SPD) of having communicated the contents of the agreement "inadequately". Previously, Saxony's prime minister Michael Kretschmer (CDU) raised similar allegations in an interview.
Maas' Minister of State, Michael Roth (SPD), in turn, warned the Union against participating in the right-wing campaign against the Migration Pact in an interview. He very much hopes that Minister of Health Spahn and the Union faction "will not take over their conspiracy scenarios out of fear of the AfD," said Roth the newspapers of the editorial network Germany. They have "all facts about the UN migration pact".
with material from AFP
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