Six asylum centres in Denmark are set to close after authorities revealed that asylum applications are now being processed quicker and rejected asylum seekers are choosing to leave the country voluntarily.
According to media reports, there are now 5,300 asylum seekers living in Danish centres in comparison with 6,246 just a few months ago. Because of the decline, the Immigration Service has chosen to close the centres in Frederikshavn, Skive and Rodby, while the Danish Red Cross is closing those in Auderod, Sigerslev and Ebeltoft.
Despite the fall of asylum seekers in recent months, Denmark received more asylum seekers in 2013 than it did in the past decade. Immigration Service figures show that 7,540 people applied for asylum last year, compared to 6,184 the previous year and 3,806 in 2011. Some 3,840 applicants were successful last year, compared to 2,583 in 2012.
The Danish Red Cross’s head of asylum Anna la Cour is satisfied asylum seekers are not spending as long in centres. She explained that the majority of applications are being processed faster, which can only be beneficial to the asylum seekers.
La Cour went on to admit that it’s tough to predict whether there will be an even greater drop in asylum seekers in the coming months, but said she could not rule out closing down more centres. However, she added that the Ebeltoft centre would be ready to open again if needed.