Nigerians, Somali, Eritreans lead African asylum-seekers in Germany – Federal Office of Statistics

Roughly 1.83 million people seeking protection were registered in Germany last year, the Federal Office of Statistics said Thursday.  Compared with 2018 the total number rose by 3%, or 55,000 people, reflecting the smallest yearly increase since 2012, according to the statistics office.

The figures refer to people seeking protection on international, humanitarian or political grounds. They include asylum-seekers with ongoing procedures, people with refugee status or another form of protection, and rejected asylum-seekers who are still in Germany.

Fewer pending procedures

The number of cases in which an asylum decision was still pending fell by 13% on the previous year to 266,000 cases. The statistics office attributes the decrease to an easing in the backlog of cases, as well as to the fact that asylum applications in Germany have decreased overall.

Recognized protection

1.36 million people in Germany were granted some form of protection status by the end of 2019, 6% more than in 2018. The main countries of origin were Syria (41%), Afghanistan (11%) and Iraq (10%). For the majority – or 80% – the status is granted for a limited time.

In 213,000 cases the request for protection was declined. This refers to people whose asylum applications were denied or who lost their protection status. The number increased by 10% compared with 2018. In most cases (84%), the migration authorities issued a “Duldung” – a temporary suspension of deportation.

In 2019, a total of 165,938 asylum applications were filed, 142,509 of which were first-time applications. The applicants’ main countries of origin were Syria, Afghanistan and Turkey. BAMF has decided on 183,954 applications during this period. The protection rate was 38.2 per cent.

Country of origin Asylum applications Protection rate (percent)
Syria 41,094 83,7
Iraq 15,348 35,0
Turkey 11,423 47,4
Afghanistan 11,306 38,0
Nigeria 10,533 6,9
Iran 9,498 20,2
Unresolved 4,228 55,2
Somalia 4,154 41,9
Georgia 3,880 0,6
Eritrea 3,743 73,9


How coronavirus pandemic affects people seeking asylum

No persons seeking protection are turned away at the German borders, the spokesman of the Federal Ministry of the Interior explained at the end of March. All of them will be individually examined to determine whether preventive health measures are necessary. 

At present, asylum-seekers can only submit applications for protection in writing to the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF). Hearings in the asylum procedure take place sporadically. On 15 June, BAMF resumed the so-called Dublin transfers, which were temporarily suspended in mid-March. Asylum-seekers can then be sent back to the EU countries in which they entered the European Union.

In the first half of 2020, 54,798 asylum petitions were filed, 47,309 of which were first-time applications. This is approximately 35 per cent less applications than in the previous year.

© InfoMigrant with additional TAC report

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