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Germany’s Open Arms

The country welcomed more asylum seekers than any other EU nation last year

The 28 countries in the European Union granted protection status to 538,000 asylum seekers in 2017, down by almost 25 percent from the previous year. Syrian nationals remained the largest group, accounting for 33 percent of the total, followed by citizens of Afghanistan and of Iraq, even as the bloc’s deal with Turkey stemmed the tide of arrivals. Germany’s welcoming policy for refugees has weighed on Chancellor Angela Merkel’s popularity, and is seen as one of the main reasons behind the rise of the right-wing AfD party.

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