Political asylum applications may have dropped in other EU countries, but at the same time, Cyprus sees a considerable rise in the number of asylum applicants, with competent authorities raising warnings as the country lacks the required infrastructure needed to manage so many migrants.
Cyprus, once a migrant transit point, now has now become a top destination for asylum seekers. Until now, the Republic of Cyprus has granted refugee status or subsidiary protection to 8,000 people. Also, 7,406 asylum applications are still pending, a number that is expected to rise due to the arrival of new immigrants. As a Migration Department official told ‘Phileleftheros’, Cyprus cannot deal with the flow of asylum seekers, as migrants who reach the island, then use to bring their relatives as well.
The situation has alarmed officials, who have been striving to adopt more effective measures for the surveillance of the sea coasts, with Minister of Interior, Constantinos Petrides, stating that a stricter approach to illegal migration should be agreed.
Related figures indicated that from 2008 since the first five months of 2018 the refugee status has been granted to 1,090 people and the Subsidiary protection status to 6,784 people.
The majority of asylum seekers in Cyprus are Syrians (860 applicants for 2018), with Indians (516 applicants), Pakistani (327 applicants), Egyptians (291 applicants) and Iraqi (238 applicants) to follow .