EU countries register 1.2m asylum seekers in 2016

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European Union

The European Union’s statistical office said Thursday that member states registered 1.2 million first-time asylum applications in 2016, which is slightly lower than the number of asylum claims submitted in 2015.

The highest number of asylum seekers came by far from Syria with 335,000 applicants, followed by Afghanistan with 183,000 and Iraq with 127,000.

The total number of 1.2 million asylum applications last year signals a drop from the 1.26 million applications submitted in 2015, which was a record high.

About 722,000 asylum seekers registered their claim in Germany, making up 60 per cent of all applicants in the EU.



Other countries with high numbers of asylum applications included Italy, France and Greece.

Other EU countries saw large drops in asylum claims compared to 2015.

The numbers of applications were down by more than 80 per cent in Sweden, Finland and Hungary.(dpa/NAN)

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