Citing unnamed sources from the CSU leadership, top-selling Bild reported that the party would agree to the plan, drawn up by her Interior Minister Horst Seehofer, from Bavaria, but delay its implementation until after an European Union summit on June 28-29.
"It is in Germany's interest to achieve the regulation of migration in a good partnership with our European neighbours", Merkel said after her CDU's leadership met. But "we want finally to have a sustainable solution for turning back refugees at our borders".
"The overwhelming majority of the German population supports this idea and this concept, and that's why we want to provide support today for implementing it", he said.
Christian Social Union (CSU) leader and interior minister Horst Seehofer, a vocal critic of Merkel's immigration policy, has warned he will give Merkel two weeks to arrange a deal with other EU leaders over migrants who have already applied for asylum elsewhere, or else shut the borders to newcomers who have previously registered in other European nations.
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On Sunday, a government spokesman said Merkel was seeking talks with some European Union members on migrant policy before the leaders summit at the end of the month although denied a report in Bild that she was trying to set up a special summit. That banished - if only for now - the spectre of Seehofer pushing through his proposal in defiance of the chancellor, which would risk bringing down her government.
"By granting Merkel her two weeks, the CSU is ostensibly making effective bilateral deals their condition for staying in the grand coalition", said Mujtaba Rahman, managing director at Eurasia Group. It was supposed to be put before the Cabinet last week, but Merkel refused to approve the point about turning back people at the borders. Asked recently whether she and her party can continue to lead the country through to its 2021 mandate and whether she is in full control, she said: "Yes to both", according to ABC News.
If the split over migration deepens and Merkel fires Seehofer, that could lead to a split in the CDU/CSU union which may in turn trigger a vote of no confidence and a possible end to Merkel's tenure. Her government toughened asylum rules and declared several countries "safe", meaning people from there can't expect to get refuge in Germany.
But he was long left waiting for a response from Berlin as Merkel, weakened by poor September election results, was occupied by half a year of arduous coalition talks.
Merkel's open-door migrant policy is widely blamed for the rise of the right-wing AfD, now the main opposition party in Germany's federal parliament. Monday's compromise means he can introduce immediate expulsion for one subset of migrants. A university study published earlier this year found that violent crime rose by about 10 percent in 2015 and 2016, with 90 percent of that crime attributed to young male refugees.