It’s been a rough year politically for Angela Merkel and things are likely to get worse Sunday when a right-wing populist party, the AfD, could outperform her own Christian Democrats in elections in the chancellor’s own home state.
Handelsblatt Global, September 2, 2016
It’s just over a year since Angela Merkel uttered her now infamous words: “Wir schaffen das,” or “We can do this” – a statement that threw German society and politics into tumult.
And in the ensuing 12 months, as the chancellor has repeatedly defended her decision to take in refugees fleeing war and chaos in Syria, Iraq and other conflict zones, Germany has faced the challenge of registering, housing and caring for of up to 1 million people.
The influx has eased since a deal with Turkey and the blocking of the Balkan route, and many thousands have already left, either deported or voluntarily after their asylum applications were rejected. Nevertheless, the country still faces the challenge of integrating hundreds of thousands that will stay – many for good.