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European asylum statistics for October 1999

Briefing notes

European asylum statistics for October 1999

3 December 1999

In October 1999, some 34,180 asylum applications were submitted in Europe, down 11 percent from September (38,370) and the lowest level since April 1999. October was the fourth consecutive month during which the number of asylum applications fell, since a peak of 45,560 monthly applications was reached in June.

According to UNHCR estimates, the United Kingdom received some 8,060 asylum-seekers during October 1999. That represents 23.6 percent of the total number of asylum applications submitted in Europe. Germany was the second largest asylum-seeker receiving country in Europe, with 22 percent, followed by the Netherlands at 10.7 percent.

Applications from citizens of FR Yugoslavia, including Kosovars, continue to show a strong decline. In October, 6,130 Yugoslav citizens applied for asylum in Europe, 26 percent less than in September (8,230). In October, 18 percent of all asylum-seekers came from FR Yugoslavia, compared to 21 percent in September and 45 percent last June.

Switzerland's role in receiving asylum-seekers from FR Yugoslavia is declining rapidly. Whereas the country received 27 per cent all asylum-seekers from FR Yugoslavia during the first nine months of 1999, its current share has fallen to 8 per cent. Similarly, the share of asylum-seekers from FR Yugoslavia in the total number of asylum-seekers in Switzerland fell from 69 per cent during the first nine months of 1999 to 27 per cent in October 1999.