Germany made one in four EU asylum grants
Emma Anderson · 13 May 2015, 14:40
Published: 13 May 2015 14:40 GMT+02:00
Updated: 13 May 2015 14:40 GMT+02:00
- German navy saves 400 Mediterranean refugees (08 May 15)
- Merkel calls for EU to share refugee load (28 Apr 15)
- CDU leader: Germany can take more refugees (15 Apr 15)
The Commission plan announced on Wednesday proposes measures to address the influx of migrants seeking to reach the continent, including beefed-up European border protections and quotas for the number of migrants each country should take in, seen as a way to share the responsibility fairly.
"The plight of thousands of migrants putting their lives in peril to cross the Mediterranean has shocked.
"It is clear that no EU country can or should be left alone to address huge migratory pressures," the Commission wrote in its report.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel has been a strong supporter of a quota system, coming from a country that has, according to new data, granted the greatest share of asylum applications across the EU.
A total of 184,665 people were granted asylum protection across the EU, of whom more than a quarter (47,555) were given protection in Germany, according to Eurostat data released on Tuesday.
More than half of those granted asylum in Germany were from Syria (54.1 percent) while Afghan people made up the second-largest group (10.4 percent) and Iraqi people made up the third largest (8.8 percent).
While Germany took in by far the largest portion of EU asylum recipients, Sweden gave protection to the greatest number per capita, granting protection to more than 33,000 people within their national population of about 9.6 million.
Still, Germany received the highest number of asylum applications in the EU last year at over 200,000 - more than twice as many as in the second-highest country, Sweden, at about 81,000 applicants.
The rate of accepting applications in Germany was not as high as in other countries.
Of the more than 97,000 asylum cases that had been decided as of the most recent analysis, 42 percent were given protections on their first attempt and 16 percent of appealed decisions were granted protection.
In Sweden, which had made decisions on nearly 40,000 cases, 77 percent of applicants were granted protection in their first attempt and 18 percent of appeals received positive decisions.
Germany reportedly expelled the highest number of asylum seekers last year since 2006, the Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung reported in February. Nearly 11,000 were expelled in 2014, up from 10,198 in 2013.
The leader of Merkel's Christian Democratic Union (CDU) in the Bundestag (German parliament) Volker Kauder said last month that Germany could and should take in more refugees.
Even more ambitious are proposals for finding ways to solve the problems that cause people to flee in the first place. The Commission calls for building "stronger partnerships with key countries outside the EU".