Sweden turns away asylum seekers

The proportion of asylum seekers sent directly back by Sweden to other EU countries has fallen marginally.

During the first ten months of the year, some 3,581, or 12 percent, of Sweden’s 30,000 asylum seekers were sent back to the EU member state in which they had first applied for asylum. Last year, 3,176 of 24,300 asylum seekers were sent back, or 13 percent.

Sweden returns asylum seekers to other EU member states under the so-called Dublin Regulation. This regulation stipulates that an asylum seeker should apply for asylum in the country in which they first enter the EU.

“The proportions are at about the same level as last year, and follow the same pattern as we have seen in previous years,” said Magnus Bengtsson, head of the Dublin Unit at the Swedish Board of Migration.

Greece was the main recipient of asylum seekers from Sweden. So far this year the Migration Board has requested Greek authorities to accept 733 people from Sweden, most of whom are Iraqi asylum seekers.