Netherlands popular refugee destination

The Netherlands is one of the few European countries where the number of asylum applications was higher last year than in 2005, the national statistics office CBS said on Monday.

In total, 14,500 people requested asylum here, an increase of some 2,000, making the Netherlands the fifth most popular destination for refugees.
In Europe as a whole, 200,000 people applied for refugee status in 2006, the lowest level in 20 years.

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