BERLIN - Multiculturalism in Germany is dead, the chairman of the country's Christian Social Union (CSU) told a meeting of the party's young guard Friday.
Hosrt Seehofer, whose party is a member of Germany's current government coalition, stirred a row last week after declaring that immigration to Germany from Turkey and Arab states must end.
This time around, the right-wing leader was quoted as saying that his party stands for "the dominant German culture and against multiculturalism – multiculturalism is dead."
Seehofer added that Germany's values are only drawn from the Judeo-Christian tradition and humanistic values, and not from Islam. The comments contradicted recent remarks made by German President Christian Wulff, who said that Islam is part of the modern Germany's character.
Merkel's silenceAlthough Seehofer's comments last week were met by condemnation, including some by members of his own party, Chancellor Angela Merkel's silence was especially prominent. In a speech Friday, Merkel urged immigrants to integrate into German society, adding that familiarity with the German language must be mandatory for local immigrants.
A wide-ranging survey published earlier this week showed that more than one-third of Germans want immigrants, some of whom had been leaving in the country for more than 40 years, to be returned to their native lands.
According to the survey, 58% of Germans would like to see limitations on Islam, while one of 10 Germans would like to see a "fuehrer" leading the country.
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