The Netherlands gave protected status to 4,795 refugees last year and granted asylum to a further 1,225 people who had first registered in another EU country, according to new figures from European statistics agency Eurostat.
In total, the 28 European member states gave protected status to almost 333,400 refugees, down 40% on 2017. Most – 139,000 – were taken in by Germany, with Italy and France in second and third place.
The Netherlands plans to cut the number of refugees it will accept under the EU resettlement scheme to 500 following the decision to allow more children to qualify for the child refugee amnesty.
Protected status covers three specific categories of refugee, Eurostat said: refugee status, subsidiary protection and protection on humanitarian grounds.
Syria accounted for 30% of the recognised refugee total, followed by Afghanistan with 16%.
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