Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan one yr on: 5 infographics to point out the impression on Europe

A yr in the past the Taliban swept again into energy in Afghanistan, triggering a mass exodus of Afghans fearing their lives could be worse underneath the nation’s new rulers. 

What impression did the Afghanistan exodus have on Europe?

The variety of Afghans looking for asylum within the European Union (EU) greater than doubled the month after the Taliban’s takeover on 15 August 2021, in contrast with July’s figures. 

That is in accordance with information from Eurostat. 

Some 6,500 Afghans utilized for asylum within the EU in July 2021, one month earlier than the takeover. This leapt to round 14,400 Afghans making functions in September. 

Regardless of beginning to drop within the first months of 2022, the variety of Afghan nationals making use of for asylum was nonetheless effectively above that of spring final yr. 

How do Afghan asylum claims evaluate with earlier years?

To raised contextualise how the US withdrawal and subsequent Taliban energy seize impacted Afghan migration to Europe, we have to evaluate 2021/22 with earlier years.

Final yr, the variety of Afghan nationals making use of for asylum in Europe greater than doubled in contrast with the previous 12 months. 

However it’s nonetheless far fewer than functions in 2015 and 2016 when Afghans — amid ongoing instability at house and a resurgent Taliban — joined lots of of 1000’s of Syrians in coming to Europe. Over these two years, greater than 360,000 Afghans requested asylum within the EU.

The place in Europe are Afghans settling?

Taking a look at the place this current inflow of Afghan nationals has sought asylum in Europe is telling.

Larger numbers utilized for asylum in rich western EU international locations, with Germany taking roughly one-third of the bloc’s complete (23,940) over the interval from August final yr — when the Taliban seized Kabul — and April, the most recent month for which Eurostat has information. 

The second hottest vacation spot was France, which acquired 13,730 first-time functions over the identical time interval. 

However there are some notable exceptions.

Not a single Afghan asylum utility was recorded in Hungary, Malta and Liechtenstein, in accordance with Eurostat. 

Which nation receives essentially the most Afghan asylum requests per capita?

Adjusting the above figures relative to a rustic’s inhabitants presents a special image. 

On that foundation, Slovenia has acquired essentially the most Afghan asylum requests. It has had 128 functions for each 100,000 of the nation’s inhabitants because the Taliban swept again to energy final August. 

Up subsequent is Austria at 107 per 100,000 individuals, adopted carefully by Bulgaria — one of many EU’s poorest international locations — with 105. 

And Germany and France? When adjusted to inhabitants dimension, Germany ranks ninth and France is smack bang in the course of the leaderboard at 14th within the EU. 

What number of Afghan asylum functions are accepted?

The proportion of Afghan asylum requests accepted elevated within the rapid aftermath of the Taliban takeover. 

In the course of the July-September interval, 67% of selections had been optimistic, in contrast with 57% between January and June. 

From October to December, the speed of asylum requests granted jumped to 88%, falling to 81% within the first three months of this yr. 

In the meantime, Catherine Woollard director of the European Council on Refugees and Exiles, says there are “severe considerations” for Afghan asylum seekers in Europe. 

Alongside what she known as an “asylum lottery”, with safety charges diverging considerably throughout the bloc, Woollard mentioned “one long-standing drawback” is that Afghans have to attend for much longer for asylum in comparison with different nationalities. 

There have been 97,960 asylum functions from Afghan nationals pending as of April 2022, in accordance with Eurostat information. 

Woollard additionally mentioned that Afghans are “extremely affected” by “violence at borders, pushbacks and the opposite efforts to disclaim entry to EU territory,” stopping them from making use of for asylum within the first place. 

“Because the response to occasions in Ukraine reveals, Europe can handle displacement crises and help refugees when the choice is taken,” she mentioned, including that the numbers of Afghans coming to Europe had been “smaller [than Ukrainians] and manageable.”

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