Newly released figures have revealed a considerable uptick in the number of asylum seeker arrivals in the Federal Republic of Germany in 2021, up 56% from the previous year, while the federal states of Berlin and Brandenburg saw arrivals increase two-fold, respectively, compared to those recorded in 2020.
The data, released at the beginning of the new year by Germany’s Federal Office for Migration and Refugees (BAMF), revealed that some 190,800 migrants submitted applications for asylum last year, up 56.4% from 2020, when authorities across the country received around 122,000 asylum applications. The figures are the highest recorded since 2017, when more than 222,600 migrants applied for asylum, the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung reports.
According to the BAMF’s figures, a mere 21.4% of submitted applications were rejected, revealing one of the main reasons that Germany continues to be the prime destination for the majority of migrants coming from the Middle East and North Africa.
As in past years—and as a direct consequence of American-led regime change adventurism—Syrian nationals were the largest group of asylum seeker arrivals, at over 70,000, followed by Afghan nationals, with more than 31,000 applying last year—a year which saw the militant Islamist Taliban regain control of the country after toppling the eminently frail Western-backed government.
For the same reason, Hamburg saw a 40% jump in asylum seekers in 2021—again, most of whom originated from Afghanistan (32%) and Syria (12%). The remaining asylum seeker arrivals came mainly from Ghana, Iraq, Turkey, Eritrea, and Somalia, Junge Freiheit reports.
Together Syrian and Afghan nationals represented well over half (53%) of all migrants who sought asylum in Germany in 2021.
Interesting, and for reasons not presently known, the number of migrants from North Macedonia who claimed asylum across Germany rose substantially. On the other hand, BAMF recorded a decline in Kosovar applicants.
In 2020, a year which saw Germany spend 22.3 billion euros on asylum seekers, roughly a quarter (24.3%) of all asylum claims in the European Union were made in Germany—a number which increased to 28.4% in the first nine months of 2021, according to data compiled by Eurostat, the European Union’s statistical agency. As of last spring, the German government had planned to spend another 21.9 billion euros on asylum seekers in 2021—a figure which has likely ballooned due to an uptick in asylum seeker arrivals.
After Germany, France remains the second most population destination for migrants claiming asylum in the EU, recording 20% of all asylum applications submitted within the bloc in 2021, followed by Spain and Italy. Last year, two-thirds of all asylum claims made in the EU were carried out in Germany, France, Spain, and Italy, Die Welt reports.
Robert Semonsen is a political journalist based in Central Europe. His work has been featured in various English-language news outlets in Europe and the Americas. He has an educational background in biological and medical science. His Twitter handle is @R_Semonsen.