Dutch ranked 13th on UNHCR refugee list

1st March 2005, Comments 0 comments

1 March 2005, AMSTERDAM — The number of people who requested asylum in the Netherlands fell to 9,780 last year, the lowest level since 1988, a report published by the United Nations' refugee agency UNHCR revealed on Tuesday.

1 March 2005

AMSTERDAM — The number of people who requested asylum in the Netherlands fell to 9,780 last year, the lowest level since 1988, a report published by the United Nations' refugee agency UNHCR revealed on Tuesday.

The number of people applying for asylum in richer countries dropped sharply for the third year in a row in 2004, hitting the lowest levels in 16 years, Reuters reported.

In 38 industrialised nations, some 368,000 people applied for asylum in 2004, representing a fall of 22 percent compared with 2003.

With its 9,780 asylum seekers, the Netherlands was ranked 13th in terms of the number of people requesting asylum. France, with 61,000 asylum seekers, topped the UNHCR rankings.

Based on a per capita basis, the top five countries in terms of arriving asylum seekers were Cyprus, Austria, Sweden, Luxembourg and Ireland.

The Dutch immigration service IND recently published comparable figures. It said 9,872 people applied for asylum in the Netherlands last year, a 30 percent decline compared with 2003.

The Netherlands implemented tougher immigration laws in April 2001 which have led to a strong decline in the number of asylum requests. In 2000, some 43,000 applied for asylum in the Netherlands.

The UNHCR attributed the fall in the global number of asylum seekers to the fact that many countries are toughening their immigration laws. This makes it increasingly difficult for asylum seekers to gain entry or to be recognised as a refugee.

[Copyright Expatica News 2005]

Subject: Dutch news

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