Fewer refugees come to the Netherlands, Syrians remain biggest group

Photo: Depositphotos.com
Photo: Depositphotos.com

The number of asylum seekers submitting their first request for refugee status in the Netherlands fell by 72% to 1,265 in the second quarter of 2020, according to new immigration service figures.

In April, at the height of the coronavirus crisis, there were just 275 applications, national statistics agency CBS reported.

Syrians accounted for 28% of the total, but there were also large numbers from Morocco and Algeria, both of which are considered to be safe countries by the Dutch.

The number of family members travelling to the Netherlands to join people with refugee residency permits also plummented – from 1,060 in the first quarter to 260 in the second.

This is largely due to the difficulties of travelling at the time, with border and consulate closures making international travel virtually impossible, the CBS said.

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