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Denmark's asylum numbers hit new low

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Denmark's asylum numbers hit new low
A June photo of the refugee tent camp in Næstved. Photo: Linda Kastrup / Scanpix
10:07 CEST+02:00
The number of people claiming asylum in Denmark has reached its lowest point since border controls were implemented in January.
According to numbers released by the Immigration Ministry, just 36 people applied for asylum between August 22-28, marking the lowest weekly total of 2016. 
 
It is also the sixth consecutive week in which the number of asylum applications has been below 100. 
 
Denmark implemented border control measures on January 4th in response to a similar move by Swedish authorities. Since then, the ostensibly temporary measures have been extended numerous times
 
In May, Denmark joined Sweden, Austria, Belgium, France and Germany in appealing to the European Commission for an extension of temporary controls at the internal borders of the Schengen area, as part of efforts to more closely monitor migration flows. 
 
With the Commission's approval, Denmark then extended its border controls through November 12th
 
Integration Minister Inger Støjberg told news agency Ritzau on Thursday that the government's moves have had their intended effect. 
 
“Border controls have given us far better opportunities to manage both security and the flow of migrants.  Border controls have been instrumental in maintaining public order and internal security in Denmark,” Støjberg said.
 
The Danish government is poised to present a comprehensive 2025 plan on Tuesday and it is expected that the anti-immigration Danish People's Party will push hard for making Denmark's border controls permanent. The party also wants to be able to deny asylum applications at the nation's borders. 
 
Through the first eight months of 2016, some 4,700 asylum seekers have come to Denmark. Home to 5.6 million people, Denmark registered 21,000 asylum applications in 2015, making it one of the top EU destinations per capita for migrants but putting it far behind the 163,000 registered in neighbouring Sweden.
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