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Why Germany has registered steep drop in refugee arrivals

German Interior Minister Thomas de Maiziere has said the number of refugees entering the country has dropped steadily since January.

Refugees-Welcome-Germany

Only 222,000 asylum-seekers have come to Germany this year, Mr De Maiziere said.

Syrians were the biggest group of asylum seekers (171,488) followed by Afghans (60,611) and Iraqis (56,540), DW reported.

Last year Germany received more than 1.1 million asylum seekers. DW reported that the influx plummeted after January 2016, falling from some 91,700 newcomers to 16,300 in June.

The decision by some Balkan countries to close their borders led to the drop in the arrival of asylum seekers in Germany, Mr De Maiziere said.

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The drop was also due to the EU’s agreement with Turkey for Ankara to keep migrants from embarking on the dangerous trip to Europe.

“We see from this that the measures taken at a German and European level are taking effect,” Mr De Maiziere said. “Although the refugee crisis has not been solved, its solution is making good progress in Europe and very good progress in Germany.”

The refugee rights’ organization Pro Asyl said the drop was “no reason for joy” and instead reflected a “crisis of human rights and refugee protection.”

“European borders are being sealed off and the right to asylum is pushed out of reach,” DW quoted the watchdog’s chief Günter Burkhardt to have said.

“German refugee homes are empty, while refugees in Greece live on the streets for months,” he added.

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