The Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons in France (OFPRA) has announced that Afghans, with 17,500 requests, were the largest group of asylum seekers in the country in 2023.
This agency stated that in total, 142,500 people requested asylum in France last year.
OFPRA released the first asylum data for the previous calendar year on Tuesday, January 23rd.
According to this agency, Afghans have been the top asylum seekers for the sixth consecutive year.
The office noted that citizens from Bangladesh, Turkey, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, and Equatorial Guinea submitted the most asylum requests to France in 2023.
According to these statistics, the asylum demand in France increased by 8.6% compared to 2022.
The agency also mentioned that the COVID-19 crisis significantly affected refugee population movements.
Reportedly, during 2023, this office issued 136,700 decisions regarding asylum cases. The Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons in France mentioned that the provided statistics are provisional, and final figures will be released after further review.
Recently, the Federal Office for Migration and Refugees in Germany also announced that over 50,000 Afghans applied for asylum in the country in 2023.
Since the Taliban’s takeover in Afghanistan, many Afghan citizens are fleeing to neighboring countries in their quest to reach Europe for a safer future. They are escaping persecution, security threats, reprisals, and extrajudicial killings, especially those who were part of the former Afghan security forces.