Asylum applications surge in Austria

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Vienna, May 21 (IANS) Austria received about 19,000 asylum applications by the end of April, an increase of almost 30 percent compared with the same period in 2015, according to official figures.

The applications were around half of the yearly maximum of 37,500, Xinhua news agency reported citing the figures issued by the interior ministry on Friday.

About a third of the applications were made by women, while the main countries of origin were Afghanistan, Syria and Iran.

The first four months also saw the assessment of 18,430 asylum claims, with 6,217 — or 45.7 percent — being granted.

Syrians had by far the highest rate of success at 84 percent.

Austria also granted a further 735 instances of subsidiary protection and 490 humanitarian residence permits.

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