Refugee Numbers in Europe Rise Again

Refugee Numbers in Europe Rise Again

After fewer asylum seekers arrived in Europe in 2020 due to the corona pandemic, the number of initial applications rose again in 2021. A particularly large number of people seeks to stay in Germany.

The number of asylum applications in the EU has risen again – particularly strong in Germany, according to data from the EU statistical authority Eurostat.

355,955 first-time asylum applications were registered in the EU in the first nine months of the year, an increase of 15 per cent compared to the same period of the previous year.

In Germany, the number of applications rose more than doubled from January to the end of September by 33 per cent to 100,240 cases.

According to the data, Germany accounted for 28.4 per cent of all first-time asylum applications in the EU in the first nine months. That is more than in any other EU country. In the same period of the previous year, the German share was 24.3 per cent.

Other central destination countries for asylum seekers were France with a share of 20 per cent of the applications (73,255), Spain with eleven per cent (39,755) and Italy with eight per cent (28,645). This means that around two-thirds of all asylum applications in the 27 EU countries concern the four most populous countries. Hungary brings up the rear: According to EU data, the authorities only accepted 30 initial asylum applications in the first three quarters.

According to the data, the largest group of asylum seekers in the EU were individuals from Afghanistan and Syria. Combined, they account for a third of all applicants, followed by individuals from Pakistan and Iraq.

In 2020, the number of asylum seekers across Europe fell significantly, mainly due to the corona pandemic. The decline in Germany (minus 28 per cent initial applications) and in the EU (minus 31 per cent) was roughly the same last year. Before the 2019 pandemic, 612,000 migrants had applied for asylum in the EU.

Image by Mstyslav Chernov (wikimedia)/Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY-SA 4.0)

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