Refugee arrivals in Germany plummet due to Balkan route closure

The monthly number of refugee arrivals through Germany's southern border has decreased by 93 per cent since January as a result of border closures along the Western Balkan route.

A spokeswoman for Bavaria's Ministry of Social Affairs said Tuesday that 5,280 people arrived through the southern state's border to Austria in March.

The figure is down 93 per cent from the 74,677 people that arrived in January, and down 49 per cent from the 41,600 people that arrived in February.

Germany registered a total of 2 million refugees in 2015, with 870,000 of them moving on to other countries. This resulted in net migration of 1.1 million people in 2015 - the largest influx since World War II.

Domestic critics of Chancellor Angela Merkel have pushed for unilateral measures to control the influx such as border controls and a cap on the number of arrivals.

But border closures in central European countries including Slovenia, Croatia, Serbia and Macedonia have caused the influx into Germany to dwindle.

Last update: Tue, 22/03/2016 - 14:22
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