Number of asylum requests in EU fall from record highs, jump in US – OECD

The number of people fleeing war or strife for more stable parts of the world declined significantly in 2017, the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) said. However, the US registered a sharp increase in asylum applications during US President Donald Trump’s first year in the White House, the OECD said in a report on broader migration trends. The biggest exodus came for a third-year running from Afghanistan, Syria and Iraq. Asylum applications to OECD countries fell 25 percent in 2017 from the record-high of 1.64 million a year earlier, according to the report. Applications to EU member states nearly halved. Requests for refugee status jumped 26 percent to 330,000 in the US, Reuters said. Immigration is shaping politics in Europe and the US.