Norway will take 1,500 asylum seekers to relieve Greece and Italy. Two out of three of them have arrived.
Recent figures from the European Commission shows that Norway has received 679 asylum seekers from Italy and 343 from Greece. Ergo were 1,022 asylum seekers sent to Norway from the two countries.
Norway voluntarily participates in the EU program for relocation of asylum seekers.
The EU plan was originally to move 160,000 asylum seekers on from Greece and Italy to relieve the two countries, which are under tremendous pressure. But the effort has gone very slowly.
So far, only 16,340 asylum seekers are sent to other countries in the EU and EEA.
– Right now, we have around 14,000 qualified applicants in Greece and 3,500 in Italy which are registered and ready for relocation. If member states step up efforts, it is possible to relocate all qualified applicants in Greece and Italy by the end of September, says Immigration Commissioner for EU, Dimitris Avramopoulos.
Asylum quotas have met fierce resistance in several member states, especially in Poland and Hungary, which have not yet accepted a single asylum seeker through the system.
Positive news is that Austria now has agreed to accept 50 asylum seekers, according to Avramopoulos. Austria announced earlier this year that the country wanted to rid of itself of its quota.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today