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1.8 million people seek protection in Germany

Louisa Wright
July 18, 2019

Germany's Central Register of Foreigners registered 1.8 million people seeking protection in 2018. Most of those who had protection status came from Syria, Iraq and Afghanistan.

Migrants wait to register in Berlin, Germany
Image: Reuters/F. Bensch

The number of people registered as seeking protection in Germany increased 6% to 1.8 million people in 2018, the Federal Statistical Office said Thursday.

The Central Register of Foreigners recorded an additional 101,600 people seeking protection for humanitarian reasons. The increase was similar to the 5% rise in the previous year.

The majority of all people seeking protection (71%) came to Germany for the first time during the last five years.

In 2018, about 1.3 million people had a humanitarian residence permit, meaning they had recognized protection status. This was 129,000 more than in the previous year.

Approximately 62% of them were citizens of Syria (526,000), Iraq (138,000) and Afghanistan (131,000). Most people (79%) had a temporary protection status.

How are Syrians faring in Germany?

Refugee status under the Geneva Convention was the most common type of protection status at 45%.

Read more: Refugees in Germany: Legal entry — without asylum

Increase in rejected applications

Some 192,000 of registered applicants had rejected protection status, an increase of 15,000 compared to 2017. This was due to either a rejected asylum application or loss of their protection status, meaning they had to leave the country.

However, the government temporarily suspended most of those rejected for asylum. Afghanistan (19,000), Iraq (14,000) and Serbia (11,000) were the origin countries with the highest number of rejected applications.

The number of people seeking protection from the Western Balkan countries fell for the third consecutive year, from 68,000 in 2015 to 42,000 by the end of 2018.

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