Record number of asylum seekers returned to Norway last year

asylum seekers july - UDI familyThe Norwegian Department of Immigration (UDI). Photo Norway Today Media

Last year Norway received more than three times as many asylum seekers from the EU than they returned to other EU countries, according to figures from the Immigration Directorate (UDI).

Altogether Norway accepted the responsibility for 2,736 asylum seekers who were first registered in Norway from different European countries. Meanwhile Norway returned 837 asylum seekers who were previously registered in other participating countries of the Dublin Agreement.

The Dublin Agreement consists of 32 countries, 28 EU countries plus Norway, Iceland, Switzerland and Liechtenstein. The objective is to ensure that asylum applications are handled by only one country. According to the agreement, refugees and migrants should seek asylum in the EU country where they first entered.

Figures for 2016 show that many asylum seekers have left to go to Germany after having already been in Norway. Germany returned 1,247 asylum seekers to Norway last year. France returned 500 and Sweden 349. Norway returned the most (211 people) back to Germany while 153 were returned to Sweden and 162 to Italy.

On a net basis, Norway had the responsibility to care for 1,899 asylum seekers as a part of the Dublin Agreement last year.

It is not common that we receive more than we return. During 2015 Norway returned 1,645 more asylum seekers than we received. The growth in 2016 is probably because many of the asylum seekers came to Norway over the border at Storskog during the autumn of 2015 and wanted to travel onto Europe.


Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today