– It’s a pretty sharp decline, not only in comparison with the extraordinary situation in the last fall, but also compared with the last spring, says Immigration Directorate (UDI) director Frode Forfang during a press conference on Tuesday morning.
In the first half of 2016, only 1678 people applied for asylum in Norway. It is the lowest number since 1997.
Forfang notes that there is still considerable uncertainty about the arrivals for the rest of the year but Norway has had a greater decline than most other European countries.
– We also do not know yet how arrivals to Europe will be through the high season in summer and early fall, said Forfang.
70 Percent Decline to Afghans
During the first five months of this year, UDI has declined over 70 percent of all asylum applications from Afghan nationals. This is a sharp increase from 2015, when about 20 percent of applicants were rejected.
The increase in the number of asylum rejection is partly because of that UDI has changed its assessment of the overall security situation in Afghanistan. UDI believes there are no provinces in Afghanistan that has a serious security situation today and there is no problem to send the asylum seekers back.