Papier mache caricature figures of German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras for a carnival float are prepared for the upcoming Rose Monday carnival parade in Cologne, Germany February 2, 2016. REUTERS/Wolfgang Rattay
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The European Union needs an ambitious grand bargain at its next summit to rescue itself from a slew of crises that threaten to blow apart its model of integration.British Prime Minister David Cameron is trying to win a referendum on staying in the EU and cannot help her due to public hostility to immigration.Berlin, the EU's pivotal power, sees controlling migration as the central priority as it tries to cope with 1 million asylum-seekers who have arrived in the last year.Ideally, EU leaders need to forge a deal on Feb. 18-19 that encompasses effective action to strengthen Europe's borders and share refugee burden, and a mutually acceptable solution to Britain's demands to change its membership terms.A package deal might yield a more integrated "core Europe," adding an EU border and coast guard and a common asylum policy, and a looser union for countries like Britain that opt to stay outside the 19-nation euro single currency area.The EU would cease to be a "two-speed Europe," with all 28 members converging at different paces toward the same goal, and become a permanent two-tier or multitier construction, possibly with an outer circle of associates such as Turkey and Ukraine.No one wants another "Grexit" crisis this year on top of the EU's other woes.
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