Werner Patzelt: Social Democrats in Germany Will Have Significant Problems to Find Consensus to End the Negotiations

 “Armedia” IAA presents an exclusive interview with Werner J. Patzelt, an expert on right-wing extremism at the Technical University of Dresden on the coalition talks in Germany.

- Merkel’s Conservatives and the Social Democrats have come into a preliminary agreement. What does it mean?

- On Friday Merkel’s party and the SPD agreed on a paper, which sets the basis for possible negotiations on coalition. The paper is already published – 28 pages, in which the most of the positions of Christian Democratic Union have been stipulated and fixed. My feeling is that the Social Democrats will have significant problems to find consensus to end the negotiations.

Now the first round is over. The top politicians agreed, the paper is quite close to what Christian Democrats have demanded in the past and even what the AFD have demanded. The open question is whether the Social Democratic basic organizations will recognize this paper.

-  What are the main problematic issues?

-  The problems that the members of the Social Democratic Party have to agree, will be ending the refugee problem, because the negotiators agreed on an upper limit. Even the negotiators agreed on a list of secure states to which the asylum seekers can easily be brought back. This is exactly what the AFD have demanded for three years and now the Social Democrats gave in. This seems to be the toughest issue and the open question is whether the organizations of Social Democratic party will agree with this regulations.

-  If we assume that the organization of the Social Democratic party agree, can we say that Merkel’s policy will mostly continue?

-  There will be significant changes in particular to immigration issue. It is really something like a U-turn. It is agreed that there will be an upper limit for immigration, that immigration has to be solved along the needs of the German society, not according to the needs of the immigrants, which is really a U-turn under the pressure of the election results.