Germany’s Merkel says on migrant crisis that Germany faces a long-term challenge and that Germans must show flexibility.
BERLIN, GERMANY (AUGUST 31, 2015) (REUTERS) – German Chancellor Angela Merkel said on Monday (August 31) that the migrant crisis presented Germany with a major challenge that would not be resolved anytime soon, urging citizens to show flexibility and patience.
“That will be a central challenge not only for days or months but for a long period of time,” Merkel said during a news conference in Berlin.
“And that’s why it’s important that while we are saying that German efficiency is great, what we need now is German flexibility”.
Merkel also said abuse, hate demonstrations and violence would not be tolerated.
“We will apply the full force of the law against those who verbally abuse others, who attack other people, who set their shelters on fire or who want to use violence. We are against those who call for hate demonstrations. There is no tolerance for those who question the dignity of other people,” the German chancellor said.
She added that the number of people supporting refugees far exceeded those protesting against them.
Regarding Greece, Merkel said that Berlin expected Athens to stick to the reform pledges it made in exchange for a third bailout programme.
“We will have new elections in Greece and I am working on the assumption that Greece will fulfil its commitments,” Merkel said.
The country will hold elections next month after Greek premier Alexis abruptly resigned, days after clinching an 86 billion euro (97 billion U.S. dollar) bailout package from Greece’s euro zone and International Monetary Fund lenders, aiming to crush a rebellion by far-left lawmakers and tighten his grip on power.