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Merkel stands by refugee stance after election losses

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(BLOOMBERG) — German Chancellor Angela Merkel stood by her embattled approach to Europe’s refugee crisis against renewed calls by party allies to change course after her Christian Democratic Union suffered losses and an anti-immigration party surged in three state elections.


“Fundamentally, I’ll continue to pursue this the same way I’ve done over the last months,” Merkel said Monday after a her party’s executive board met in Berlin to review the previous night’s results. “I think the stance is the right one and I don’t think it was placed into question today.”


While the chancellor said the losses, including defeats by the Greens in Baden-Wuerttemberg and by the Social Democrats in Rhineland-Palatinate, represented a “difficult day” for the party, she said she’ll persist in seeking long-term solutions to the refugee influx on the European level and with Turkey’s government. That was rejected by Bavarian Premier Horst Seehofer, Merkel’s chief antagonist at home, who said she couldn’t just plow ahead as if nothing had happened.


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