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Granted asylum requests in EU dropped almost 40% in 2018 – Eurostat

The EU’s statistics agency has said more than 300,000 people were granted asylum within the bloc last year, a drop of almost 40 percent from 2017. Eurostat said on Thursday that around 333,400 people were deemed eligible for international protection, most of them Syrians, Afghans or Iraqis fleeing conflict or persecution. The agency says 67,000 of the total 96,100 Syrians determined to be refugees across the 28-nation EU in 2018 were granted asylum in Germany. Italy, Germany and France were the EU countries that recognized the most refugees, AP said. Over 1 million migrants entered the EU in 2015, a relatively small number compared to arrivals in Turkey, Jordan and Lebanon. However, the influx caused a political crisis and immigration became a hot-button topic in Europe. EU countries remain deeply divided over the best approach despite the sharp drop in new arrivals.