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Turkish citizens rank fourth among asylum seekers in Germany

People holding a Turkish passport were the fourth largest group seeking asylum in Germany in 2020, with 5,196 Turkish citizens lodging asylum applications last year, Deutsche Welle reported, citing data from the German Interior Ministry.

Compared to 2019, Germany saw a 31.5 percent drop in the total number of asylum applications in 2020, when 76,061 people sought asylum.

The fall in the number of asylum applications is due to the coronavirus pandemic as well as to a continuation of a downward trend over the past four years, DW reported.

The largest group of people seeking asylum in Germany in 2020 was Syrians, with 25,373 applications, followed by Afghans, with 8,051 applications, Iraqis with 7,355 applications and then Turks.

Asylum applications lodged by Turkish nationals in Germany increased significantly after a failed coup in 2016.

While only 1,767 Turks sought asylum in 2015, the number went up to 5,742 in 2016, 8,483 in 2017 and 10,655 in 2018.

The Turkish government launched a massive crackdown targeting followers of the faith-based Gülen movement in the aftermath of a 2016 failed coup that the Turkish government blamed on the movement, although it strongly denies any involvement.

Since then, the number of Turks seeking asylum in Western European countries has been on the rise.

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