By Jonathan Davies

German Chancellor Angela Merkel has warned UK Prime Minister David Cameron that she would rather see the UK leave the EU than compromise on the freedom of movement.

News magazine Der Spiegel suggests that Merkel believes Mr Cameron is taking the UK to a "point of no return".

The Prime Minister has made reforms to the UK's relationship with the EU, particularly on immigration, one of his key policies ahead of the general election in 2015.

Mr Cameron has said that the freedom of movement for workers within the EU would be "at the very heart of my renegotiation strategy for Europe".

But the German Chancellor is understood to be willing to withdraw her support for the UK's continued membership if David Cameron presses ahead with his proposed reforms.

Der Spiegel quotes sources from within the German Chancellor's office and foreign ministry as saying: "Should Cameron persist Chancellor Angela Merkel would abandon her efforts to keep Britain in the EU.

"With that a point of no return would be reached. That would be it then."

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