About 25,000 seek asylum in Netherlands this year

Refugees at the Lebanon-Syria border (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/H. Murdock). (Child asylum seekers (Picture: Wikimedia Commons/H. Murdock))

Statistics Netherlands (CBS) has reported that in the first eight months of this year, 25,000 asylum seekers have come pouring into the Netherlands. Half of these applicants came from Syria with only around 1,400 from Eritrea.

By the end of August, the number of people wanting refuge in the Netherlands easily eclipsed the 24,000 asylum seekers who arrived in all of 2014. Roughly 7,000 people applied for asylum in August 2015 alone, of which half are Syrian.

Adult men are usually the first to apply for asylum, comprising of 17,000 total applicants, followed by 8,000 people classified as "nareizigers," the family members who have followed the asylum seekers already granted temporary residency.

Refugee intake in the Netherlands has been on the increase in the past number of years, with figures showing an increase of 66 percent between 2013 and 2014. Between December 2014 and July 2015 the number of family members travelling form Syria far exceeded the number of asylum seekers from that country. Compared to the same period last year both the number of asylum seekers and nareizigers from Syria, Eritrea and stateless persons, mainly from the Palestinian territories, was on the rise.

While only seven percent of asylum seekers and their families have reported from Eritrea, the majority influx of asylum seekers are indeed from Syria. So far, 59 percent of asylum seekers are adult males, 20 percent are women, and 21 percent are children. Nearly two-thirds of "nareizigers" are underage, and 31 percent are female.