The number of first-time asylum applicants in Bulgaria was 82 per cent higher in the third quarter of 2016 than in the second quarter, rising to 6365 – almost half of the new applicants coming from Afghanistan, EU statistics agency Eurostat said on December 15.
Of the first-time applicants in the third quarter of 2016, a total of 3145 were from Afghanistan, 1365 (21 per cent) from Iraq and 810 (13 per cent) from Pakistan, Eurostat said.
The number of first-time asylum applicants represented 1.8 per cent of the EU total.
Per million inhabitants of Bulgaria, the number added up to 890 – above the EU average of 702.
Eurostat said that in the third quarter of 2016, the number of first-time asylum seekers in the EU was close to 360 000.
This was an increase of 17 per cent over the second quarter of 2016.
From January to September 2016, more than 950 000 first-time asylum seekers were registered in EU countries.
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(Photo: Ben Melrose/V Photo Agency)