ISTANBUL

The European Union accepted 297,055 asylum seekers’ applications in 2019, the 27-member bloc’s statistical office announced on Friday.

While 612,695 people applied for asylum to the EU from 152 countries in 2019, most of applicants were from Syria (74,400), Afghanistan (52,500), Venezuela (44,800), Eurostat said.

Some 43% of total applications came from Asia, while Africa (24%), America (19%), Europe (12%) and Oceania (0.002%) followed it. Stateless persons’ share among applicants was 0.5% in 2019.

Germany, France and Spain were three main countries that received the highest number of applications with 142,500, 119,900 and 115,200, respectively.

Germany accepted the largest amount of asylum seekers last year among the EU member countries, with over 116,000 people.

France accepted 42,120 applications, Spain 38,525 and Italy 31,010 last year, according to Eurostat data.

While 47% of applicants were aged 18-34 years, 31% of them were under 18 years of age.

Some 62% of total applications were made by men and rest of them by women.

In 2019, three main beneficiaries were nationals from Syria (78,300), Afghanistan (40,200) and Venezuela (37,500).

While 21,200 asylum seekers were resettled — transferred to third countries on request from the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) — 842,500 people are still waiting for decision.

Meanwhile, Turkey hosts around 3.9 million refugees and asylum seekers, of which 3.6 million are Syrians, according to the UNHCR data.

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