More refugees granted asylum in Europe last year
BRUSSELS (AP) — The European Union’s statistical agency says more people were granted asylum across the 28-nation bloc last year mostly because of a high influx of refugees fleeing the war in Syria.
Eurostat said Thursday the number of accepted asylum seekers rose by 17 percent to 135,700 in 2013 from 116,200 a year earlier, meaning about one in three applications was accepted out of a total of 462,000.
The biggest group of refugees that were granted asylum were some 36,000 Syrians, a quarter of the total, followed by about 16,000 Afghans and 9,700 Somalis.
Sweden, with 9.6 million inhabitants, was the most generous country in accepting asylum seekers, granting protection to 26,400 people, followed by Germany, the EU’s most populous nation, which accepted 26,100 people. France took in 16,200, and Italy 14,500.