German chancellor Angela Merkel and French president Emmanuel Macron also met near Berlin on Tuesday night to agree on a mutual approach to the issue.

Germany’s coalition government almost cracked apart as Merkel’s Christian Democrats and their sister party - Bavaria’s Christian Social Union (CSU) - rowed over immigration but the CSU on Monday gave Merkel two weeks to get a deal with European allies.

The special meeting comes days before all 28 of the EU leaders will meet in Brussels at the quarterly European Council summit, in which migration will also be discussed.

With Reuters