Norway tops Europe on asylum generosity
Norway took in more refugees per head last year than any European country apart from Sweden and Malta, despite a pledge by the right-wing government elected in September to limit immigration numbers.
According to new figures published by Eurostat, Norway granted protection status to 6,770 refugees in 2013, about 135 for every 100,000 Norwegians.
While less generous than Sweden, which accepted 278 refugees per 100,000 population, or Malta, which accepted 385, this puts Norway far ahead of less charitably minded countries such as the UK, France and Germany, who accepted just 21, 25, and 31 refugees per 100,000 citizens respectively.
The largest number of refugees to Norway in 2013 came from Eritrea, with 2,235 (33 percent), followed by Somalia with 1,285 (19 percent) and Syria with 740 (11 percent).
The total number of asylum seekers to the 28 European Union countries, which does not include Norway, shot up to 135,725 in 2013 to 2012.
The statistics were published by Eurostat, the statistical office of the European Union, on Thursday.